Taipei Department of Education Commissioner Tang Chih-min (湯志民) has tendered his resignation to Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲).
In an open letter to department staff yesterday, Tang said he had “completed the mission assigned for this phase,” and that he expects to resume teaching at National Chengchi University on Saturday.
Sources said Tang tendered his resignation on Tuesday.
Tang’s resignation coincided with Taipei Department of Legal Affairs Commissioner Yang Fang-ling’s (楊芳玲) resignation on Tuesday.
It is believed that Ko’s decision to reinstate former Taipei Municipal Zhongshan Junior High School music teacher Hsiao Hsiao-ling (蕭曉玲) — which was made public the same day — led to Yang’s and Tang’s resignations, as both were involved in the decision to fire Hsiao.
Hsiao in 2008 took the city government to court, saying she was wrongfully fired after a performance evaluation as an act of political retaliation by then-Taipei mayor Hau Lung-bin’s (郝龍斌) administration, which she said was motivated by her opposition to the Hau administration’s “one guideline, single textbook” education policy.
Although the Supreme Administrative Court ruled in favor of the city government in 2011, the Control Yuan issued a corrective measure against the city in 2013, citing irregularities and procedural improprieties in the conduct of the review board.
On Wednesday, Ko rescinded Hsiao’s contract and re-employed her at another city school, with compensation for nine years’ worth of salary owed to the teacher.
In response to reporters’ questions yesterday, Ko said he received Tang’s resignation, but had not accepted it yet, adding that he would decide whether to accept the resignation when the city government returns to work today.
When asked whether Yang and Tang’s resignations were linked, Ko said: “Everything has two sides, and there comes a time when a choice must be made.”
Regarding Hsiao’s case, it is the responsibility of a mayor to take action when an innocent person has been wronged by the legal system, Ko said, adding that certain issues cannot be redressed by legal procedures alone.
Ko said that the goal of transitional justice is to prevent repeating mistakes, adding that while he has been criticized of “leaving a good deed incomplete,” he continues to favor the redressing of mistreated people in a way that does not contribute to a “cycle of retribution.”
“If a perpetrator must be found in this case, let me take the blame,” he said.
The replacement of political appointees are “like divorces” in that they are routine occurrences that happen due to questions of “compatibility and not of mistakes,” Ko said, adding that 24 commissioners had quit in the first four years of Hau’s administration.
CLOSE ENCOUNTERS: Several of the PLA fighter jets that crossed the median line of the Strait came within 68km of Hsinchu, drawing warnings from Taiwan, the ministry said At least 18 Chinese military aircraft yesterday flew into the nation’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on the second day of a US delegation’s visit, the Ministry of National Defense said, adding that the military responded by deploying an air defense missile system to monitor their activities. A delegation led by US Undersecretary of State for Economic Growth, Energy and the Environment Keith Krach on Thursday started a three-day visit to Taiwan. The ministry from Thursday started publicizing the actions of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in Taiwan’s ADIZ on its Web site and Twitter. According to ministry reports, 18 PLA aircraft
TWO CASES: The five allegedly conspired with conglomerates, threatening the nation’s governance and subverting the rules of ethical conduct, a deputy chief prosecutor said Taipei prosecutors yesterday charged three legislators and one former lawmaker with contravening the Anti-Corruption Act (貪污治罪條例) in a case linked to former Pacific Distribution Investment Co (太平洋流通) chairman Lee Heng-lung’s (李恆隆) battle with the Far Eastern Group (遠東集團) over ownership of the Pacific SOGO Department Store (太平洋崇光百貨) chain, while independent Legislator Chao Cheng-yu (趙正宇) was indicted in a separate case involving two funeral services companies and a plot of land in a national park. Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislators Chen Chao-ming (陳超明) and Sufin Siluko (廖國棟), Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Su Chen-ching (蘇震清) and former New Power Party legislator
PENGHU INSPECTION: Taiwan cannot let its enemies strut around in its airspace, Tsai said, one day after a Chinese spokesman denied a median line exists in the Taiwan Strait Following China’s assertion on Monday that there is no “median line” in the Taiwan Strait, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday pledged to defend the nation’s airspace during a visit to an air force base in Penghu, saying that Taiwan cannot allow others to flex their military muscle in its territorial airspace. Tsai praised the “heroic performance” of the pilots of the Indigenous Defense Fighters who have been intercepting Chinese People’s Liberation Army Air Force planes in recent days. “I have a lot of confidence in you. As soldiers of the Republic of China [ROC], how could we let enemies strut
Swedish Member of Parliament Hampus Hagman is pushing for changing the name of the nation’s trade office in Taipei to signal improved relations with “Asia’s perhaps foremost democracy.” Hagman on Wednesday last week proposed renaming the Swedish Trade and Invest Council to “Sweden’s Office in Taipei,” following similar changes by other nations. The Swedish Trade and Invest Council, part of Business Sweden, is owned by the Swedish government and Swedish industry. Taiwan and Sweden share important values such as respect for democracy, human rights, the rule of law and freedom of speech, Hagman said in the motion, adding that the two nations