Fri, Oct 03, 2003 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan Quick Take

STAFF WRITER WITH AGENCIES

■ PoliticsLawmaker convicted of libel

The Taipei District Court yesterday found People First Party (PFP) Legislator Fu Kun-chi (傅崑萁) guilty of libeling a government official and sentenced him to 30 days detention or a fine of NT$27,000. In March, Fu called then Government Information Office director general Arthur Iap (葉國興) "a dog unleashed by [President] Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) to bite people." He made the remark in a press conference as he criticized Iap over a translation error in a Central News Agency's report which implicated PFP Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜) in the Lafayette frigate scandal. The court ruled that, since Fu made the statement in the PFP's press conference room in the legislature, he was not protected by legislators' immunity of speech privilege. Fu said he will appeal the verdict.

■ Education

Book drive launched

BenQ Corp and China Airlines, along with other local companies, are sponsoring a drive to collect English-language children's books for schools in remote areas. They are urging expatriates and Taiwanese to donate books before Dec. 31. Books can be sent to the offices of the United Daily News at 555 Chunghsiao E. Road or branches of the Taipei Fifi Bookstore in Taipei, Yilan, Taoyuan, Taichung and Kaohsiung.

■ Crime

Police crack `rape pill' ring

Police raided an apartment in a high-rise building in Kaohsiung on Wednesday night, seizing 18kg of Ketamine and arresting five individuals. A police officer said that, according to preliminary investigations, two of the suspects manufactured Ketamine, a sedative drug known as "rape pills," in the apartment for two of the other suspects to sell in pubs. The materials they used to manufacture the drug were allegedly supplied by the fifth suspect. The officer said evidence shows that the suspects have sold an unknown quantity of the drug.

■ Education

Vocational schools backed

President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) promised yesterday that his administration will not phase out vocational high schools. He said students should have a wider range of options in the nation's diversified and pluralistic society. Chen made the remarks at the opening of a two-day national conference in Taichung for the heads of vocational high schools. Chen said the government will devote more energy and resources to develop vocational education facilities instead of abolishing them. The government should build a good environment in which children and youth should be provided with more options and channels to develop their interests, potential and dispositions, he said.

■ Language

Chen urges diversity

President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) said yesterday that the establishment of official languages should be based on the respect for differences among ethnic groups and cultures, and should transcend stereotypes and political ideologies. He made the remarks in an essay on his Web site on the beauty and diversity of Taiwan's languages. Chen said he speaks Hakka and Aboriginal languages on occasion and even though he is far from fluent, it helps to "bridge the gap between him and his audiences." He said there are 29 languages spoken in Taiwan, including Hoklo (also known as Taiwanese), Mandarin, Hakka and more than a dozen Aboriginal languages.

This story has been viewed 3250 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top