The National Women’s League has submitted all of the financial documents requested by the Ministry of the Interior (MOI), ministry officials said yesterday.
Civil Affairs Department Deputy Director Luo Rui-ching (羅瑞卿) said that the ministry had received a listing of the league’s assets and debts, completing its required filings following the submission of income and budget reports last month.
Listed assets added up to more than NT$30 billion (US$975 million), with an annual income of more than NT$300 million, Luo said, adding that the documents would be posted online within two working days.
Following the passage of Legislative Yuan resolutions demanding the opening of the league’s finances, the ministry over the past several months has repeatedly demanded that it submit the documentation.
The Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee is expected to initiate an investigation into whether the league is an affiliate of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), which would make it subject to seizure of its assets by the government.
While organization officials had previously remained silent in face of allegations that the league illicitly benefited from close ties to the Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石) administration, league chairwoman Cecilia Koo (辜嚴倬雲), in an interview published in the Chinese-language United Daily News yesterday, denied KMT links and said that the vast majority of the league’s money should be considered donations rather than from taxes.
Chiang’s wife Soong Mayling (宋美齡) served as the league’s first chairwoman, with most of its funding coming from a so-called “military benefit tax” levied on the US dollar value of all imported goods from 1955 to 1989.
The group said that it would give away nearly NT$28 billion of NT$38 billion it said it has in capital, including NT$16 billion to the government to fund long-term care, NT$5 billion to Cheng Hsin General Hospital and NT$6 billion to social welfare organizations.
The military benefit tax was technically donations by trade associations, Luo said, adding that the league was obliged to make full disclosure of spending regardless of where the money came from.
“All groups — including the league — that receive government subsidies or private donations are subject to basic transparency requirements to allow for public supervision,” Minister of the Interior Yeh Jiunn-rong (葉俊榮) said.