Mon, May 19, 2003 - Page 3 News List

Allegations haunt hospital manager

CORRUPTION PRACTICES Two DPP legislators have accused Chang Mau-song of the illegal use of an NT$300 million fund and other financial irregularities

By Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTER

DPP legislators Charles Chiang, left, and Lee Chen-nan hold a press conference yesterday. The lawmakers put forward 10 questions regarding the corruption scandal of a former superintendent of the Veterans General Hospital, Chang Mau-song.

PHOTO: SEAN CHAO, TAIPEI TIMES

Former superintendent of Taipei's Veterans General Hospital Chang Mau-song (張茂松), who enjoys a close relationship with former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝), recently hit the headlines after he became the target of corruption allegations.

Chang, a famous cardiologist with a good reputation throughout the country, was born on Jan. 12, 1942. After graduating from the National Defense Medical Center in 1967, he joined the Veterans General Hospital in 1972.

Eight years later, Chang became the director of the hospital's Department of Heart Functions and an assistant professor at National Yang-Ming University's Medical School.

In 1982, he was promoted to chief cardiologist of the department of cardiology at the hospital's Taichung branch. In the meantime, he married Chou Jo-hua (周若華), the daughter of Chou Chi-hsun (周濟勳) who was then superintendent of the Veterans General Hospital.

Two years later, he was again promoted and transferred back to Taipei as the hospital's chief cardiologist. In 1989, he became a professor at Yang-Ming University's Medical School. In 1994, he was promoted to director of the medical school.

In 1995, Chang was again promoted and he became the deputy superintendent of the Taipei Veterans General Hospital this time.

In 1997, he became the dean of Yang-Ming University's Medical School and only a year after that, Chang took over the superintendent's office at the Veterans General Hospital and the vice president's office at the National Yang-Ming University.

When Chang became superintendent, he also became one of former president Lee Teng-hui's most-trusted medical doctors and often provided consultant services to Lee.

After Lee retired in 2000, he and his wife Tseng Wen-hui (曾文惠) still visited Chang regularly at the hospital for regular health check-ups.

Chang well-served the former first family and Lee once said, "Chang did take good care of me and my wife."

Recently, however Chang has found himself the target of some fierce criticism.

On April 23, DPP legislators Lee Chen-nan (李鎮楠) and Charles Chiang (江昭儀) first made their accusation against Chang at a press conference.

According to the lawmakers, Chang was the only person at the hospital to have access to a secret NT$300 million fund called the "Jung-kwang Fund."

Lee and Chiang said that as a superintendent of the hospital, Chang was responsible for explaining what was happening with the fund, something the lawmakers claimed he had failed to do. In addition, Lee and Chiang said, Chang had a duty to determine whether the fund was illegal.

The DPP lawmakers also accused Chang of accepting bribes from medical equipment and drug manufacturers, while also claiming Chang hired a friend to handle the money for him.

According to Lee and Chiang, the hospital's chief accountant Yi Ping-tung (易屏東) -- recently promoted to the position of chief secretary and personal aide to Chang -- was the person taking care of the bribe money for Chang.

Chang resigned his post as the superintendent of the hospital on the same day as the press conference. His position was taken over by Deputy Superintendent L Liang-shong (李良雄) on May 14.

The Shihlin District Prosecu-tors' Office also decided on the same day to begin an investigation into the corruption accusations under Prosecutor Chou Miao-jan's (卓繆然) command.

In addition to the NT$300-million fund, Chang is also under suspicion of laundering another NT$3.6 billion and depositing the money into bank accounts in the US.

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