Tue, Jul 02, 2002 - Page 4 News List

Taiwanese want to get to bottom of the voting scandal, a KMT poll reveals

By Crystal Hsu  /  STAFF REPORTER

An overwhelming majority of the people in Taiwan would support a probe into the alleged fraud linked to the confirmation vote for key government posts on June 21, according to a KMT opinion poll released yesterday.

The survey, conducted by the opposition party last Friday, indicated that over 80 percent of respondents believe that the Ministry of Justice should look into the matter.

The controversy surfaced last week, when Chang Po-ya (張博雅), whose nomination to be Examination Yuan vice president failed to win approval, accused some lawmakers of asking her aides for money in exchange for their votes.

The KMT legislative caucus, which had boycotted Chang's appointment by banning its 60-plus members from attending the vote, labelled the allegations "highly plausible."

"There is no smoke without fire," KMT Legislator Huang Chao-shun (黃昭順) said. "The reported tradeoffs could not be baseless in light of what transpired that day."

Huang said some people saw a senior DPP lawmaker roaming the legislative chamber with a checkbook during the vote on the appointment of Senior Presidential Adviser Yao Chia-wen (姚嘉文) to be Examination Yuan head.

Huang also said that all DPP legislators, as well as a few independents, had to display their ballots to senior colleagues before putting them into the ballot boxes to comply with a caucus order.

DPP Legislator Chou Po-lun (周伯倫), one of those assigned to oversee the voting, was reportedly overheard telling independent Legislator Chen Chin-ting (陳進丁) "the deal would be off" if he refused to display his ballot.

The KMT survey, based on a random telephone interview of 1,067 residents aged 20 and older, showed that 66 percent of respondents are aware of the controversy. Nearly 70 percent said vote-buying is a major problem. The survey has a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percent.

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