Sun, Aug 06, 2006 - Page 3 News List

KMT legislator attacks Control Yuan's response to first lady's jewelry report

CNA , TAIPEI

The Control Yuan, the nation's highest watchdog body, was "weak" in its response to a jewelry assets report filed by President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) and first lady Wu Shu-jen (吳淑珍), an opposition lawmaker said yesterday.

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Tsai Ching-lung (蔡錦隆) made the remarks one day after the Presidential Office replied to the Control Yuan in a letter saying that because the first lady borrowed some jewelry from relatives and friends, she could not list it in the report "for privacy reasons."

According to Tsai, the Control Yuan should "voice strong discontent" over the reply, instead of saying that the first couple had not violated the law.

The first couple sent a corrected version of jewelry assets to the Control Yuan early last month, listing 15 pieces of jewelry and watches, with a value of NT$3.725 million (US$113,560).

Legislators from the KMT and People First Party then showed photos of 31 pieces of jewelry worn by the first lady on various occasions. The Control Yuan therefore asked the first family to give an explanation within 15 days.

The first couple, replied on Friday -- the last day before the deadline -- that they had acquiesced to the request by filing reports on their jewelry, but had not reported on pieces borrowed from relatives or friends because these people were not being audited and their privacy should be protected.

Tsai said the KMT caucus would lodge a strong protest with the Control Yuan over its "weakness."

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