Sun, May 13, 2018 - Page 1 News List

NTU urges ministry to appoint Kuan

By Rachel Lin and Wu Po-hsuan  /  Staff reporters

Students hold signs against National Taiwan University president-elect Kuan Chung-ming at a school affairs meeting in Taipei yesterday.

Photo: CNA

National Taiwan University (NTU) yesterday urged the Ministry of Education to approve the appointment of NTU president-elect Kuan Chung-ming (管中閔), after a provisional school affairs meeting passed a motion supporting Kuan.

Kuan was on Jan. 5 elected NTU president and was supposed to take office on Feb. 1.

However, the ministry put off approval of his appointment amid allegations of plagiarism and a conflict of interest, as well as a flawed selection process.

The controversy led to the resignation of former minister of education Pan Wen-chung (潘文忠).

After Minister of Education Wu Maw-kuen (吳茂昆) took office, the ministry on April 27 decided not to approve Kuan’s election on grounds that the election process was flawed, and asked NTU to hold a new election.

NTU yesterday convened a provisional school affairs committee meeting to address the issue and other matters related to the selection of its president, during which a number of resolutions were proposed by committee members.

A resolution proposed by NTU agricultural economics professor Jerome Geaun (官俊榮) and NTU psychology professor Hsu Yung-fong (徐永豐) urged the ministry to give Kuan an appointment contract and advised the school to take legal action if the ministry refuses.

It also requires the school to allow interim president Kuo Tei-wei (郭大維) to exercise full presidential powers before a new president is appointed.

The resolution was passed 77-30, with three invalid votes.

The ministry did not respect the university’s autonomy and the independence of the election committee, and its order that the school hold a new election has no legal basis, Geaun said.

Two motions launched by NTU economics professor Jang Show-ling (鄭秀玲) and NTU electrical engineering professor Wu Ruey-beei (吳瑞北) sought to start a new election process, but both were voted down.

Kuan’s part-time employment at a telecom was obviously illegal, as his application to the school came two months later, Jang said, adding that Kuan should shoulder the legal expenses should the school file a lawsuit.

Also vetoed was a motion proposed by NTU Student Association president Lin Yen-ting (林彥廷), who called for adjusting the members in the election committee and internal meetings, and reviewing the legal and administrative disputes throughout the election process.

Other students expressed anger over being barred from the internal meeting.

The meeting’s venue was changed at the last minute to a smaller meeting room, even though its original venue, a large conference room, was not occupied, as the school administration had claimed, students said.

Students waiting outside the meeting room were blocked by staff who said there was no more room, said Kao Shao-fang (高紹芳), NTU student and NTU Presidential Election Reform Front spokesperson.

The ministry said it would determine its next step after receiving the university’s official decision in writing.

Additional reporting by CNA

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