Thu, Nov 24, 2005 - Page 3 News List

DPP asks Ma to investigate graft allegations

By Ko Shu-ling  /  STAFF REPORTERS

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislative caucus yesterday asked Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) to investigate KMT candidates embroiled in alleged scandals, and to pull them out of next week's election if the allegations are proven true.

"We're glad to hear that Chairman Ma wants to follow in our footsteps and set up a `clean government commission,' but at the same time we are worried that his pledges of reform will merely serve as a trick to deceive voters," DPP caucus whip William Lai (賴清德) said.

If the KMT truly wants to establish such an entity, Lai said they should not have blocked an organic bill of a clean government bureau, which would have been established under the Ministry of Justice, and the confirmation of President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) nominations for Control Yuan members.

Call on Ma

Lai called on Ma, once the KMT's "clean government commission" has been established, to apply the same high moral standards as adopted by the DPP and strip its corrupt candidates of their party membership and ask them to withdraw from the election.

The DPP's "clean government commission" has expelled former deputy secretary-general to the Presidential Office Chen Che-nan (陳哲男), former director of the Kaohsiung Bureau of Rapid Transit Systems Chou Li-liang (周禮良) and Fan Lai-chin (方來進), director of the Kaohsiung City Government's Bureau of Labor Affairs, since the eruption of the recent Kaoshiung Rapid Transit Corp (KRTC) scandal.

Questionable

Lai said those questionable KMT candidates include Cho Po-yuan (卓伯源), who is running for the Changhua County commissioner, and Huang Chung-shen (黃仲生), who is standing in the Taichung County commissioner race.

Cho is alleged to have engaged in illegal lobbying and taking kickbacks in the purchase of a railroad machine parts and freeway electronic toll collection system. Huang allegedly has issued over 100 permits to allow illegal video gambling arcades to operate in the county.

Lai also demanded that Ma apologize to the public for lying to farmers about their increased monthly pension and that he promise not to make the same mistake again.

Ma reportedly told older farmers in Changhua County last Wednesday that the increase in farmers' monthly pension was proposed by the KMT but opposed by the DPP.

DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) yesterday said he could not help but laugh when he saw Ma was signing a treaty that commits the KMT to not buying votes and taking bribes.

"Ma simply told a an out-and-out lie. Just looking back at the history of elections, the KMT has been the political party that practiced vote-buying most," Su said.

He said that the election is an opportunity to test whether Ma's image of integrity is genuine.

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