Sat, Feb 03, 2018 - Page 1 News List

ROCPSA is KMT affiliate, experts tell committee

‘NO DOUBT’:It would be an understatement to call the association and its local branches KMT affiliates, as they are practically its local chapters, an expert said

By Stacy Hsu  /  Staff reporter

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Party Disciplinary Committee director Wei Ping-cheng yesterday speaks at a public hearing in Taipei on whether the Republic of China Public Service Association is a KMT affiliate.

Photo: Huang Yao-cheng, Taipei Times

Two experts yesterday said at a public hearing that the Republic of China Public Service Association (ROCPSA) is “without a doubt” a Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) affiliate.

Speaking at the Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee’s offices in Taipei, National Cheng Kung University political science professor Leung Man-to (梁文韜) said the association encapsulated the KMT’s totalitarianism during the Martial Law era, as it was tasked with monitoring people and controlling society.

“Some might question how the association could be considered a KMT affiliate since it is not called the KMT Public Service Association, but the omission was deliberate so that their intricate relationship could be glossed over,” said Leung, a Taiwanese born in Hong Kong who moved to Taiwan 17 years ago.

If the association was not affiliated with the KMT, it would not have needed to subject itself to the party’s supervision and the KMT would not have transferred its assets to the association and vice versa, Leung said.

“The KMT undoubtedly enjoyed full control of the association,” Leung added.

According to the committee’s investigative report, the association was established in 1962 and was run by then-KMT Central Committee Third Division director Ma Shu-li (馬樹禮).

The association was later integrated with the more than 300 local public service offices that had been founded nationwide since 1951, as per an earlier KMT reform resolution that was aimed at “facilitating public services, promoting party policies and consolidating the party’s leadership among the people.”

Citing documents from the KMT and publications with close links to the party, the committee said the association and its local branches were often housed under the same roof as the KMT’s local chapters, and were tasked with carrying out election campaigns and investigations into local factions and important figures for the KMT.

Their funding came from both the KMT and the now-abolished Taiwan Provincial Government.

They were also allowed to occupy public land or properties without paying any rent in most cases, the committee said.

To this day, the committee found that 125 of the KMT’s 135 local chapters are listed at the same address as the association’s local branches, while 252 of the 383 association branches — including the association itself — are registered at buildings owned by the KMT, party-owned Central Investment Co (中央投資) or its subsidiaries.

In addition, the association’s chair has mostly been taken up by KMT secretaries-general, the committee said.

National Chengchi University professor Lee Yeau-tarn (李酉潭) said that as a KMT member himself, he could say with confidence that the association has undoubtedly been controlled by the party.

“It is an understatement to call the association and its local branches KMT affiliates. They are practically the party’s local chapters,” Lee said.

Refuting the committee’s report, KMT Party Disciplinary Committee director Wei Ping-cheng (魏平政), who represented the party at the hearing, said the KMT merely provided “counseling and guidance” to the association and that there was nothing wrong with the party sharing its resources with an organization that shared its ideals.

“It is ridiculous to label the association as a KMT affiliate simply because some branches are listed under the same address as the party’s local offices. Many bar associations work at district courts or prosecutors’ offices, does that mean they are also affiliated?” Wei said.

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