Wed, Oct 25, 2006 - Page 3 News List

Wait for probe to end, presidential spokesman says

JUSTICEPeople should respect the independence of the judiciary and not jump to conclusions about the investigation into Chen's special allowance fund, David Lee cautioned

By Ko Shu-ling  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Presidential Office yesterday called on the public to respect the judicial inquiry into President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) controversial special allowance fund and refrain from wild speculation.

"The judiciary is still investigating the case and has found no evidence so far proving that the president or first lady has been involved in any illegal act," Presidential Office Spokesman David Lee (李南陽) said.

"As Taiwan is a democracy governed by the rule of law, we hope the public would respect the independence of the judicial system and understand the president's resolve and courage to safeguard judicial justice," he said.

Lee questioned the wisdom of making premature predictions about the outcome of the case.

The Presidential Office has not -- and never would -- interfere in the judicial investigation and urged the media to refrain from making unfounded claims or exerting pressure on the judicial system, he said.

Lee made the remarks in response to media inquiries about a comment National Security Council Secretary-General Chiou I-jen (邱義仁) made on Monday.

Chiou had said that the president should step down if Chen or his wife, Wu Shu-jen (吳淑珍), were found to "be involved in" graft.

Corruption

While fielding questions from Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Pan Wei-kang (潘維剛) on the legislative floor yesterday, Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) said that the president should step down if he or members of his family were confirmed to have been involved in any form of corruption.

"Politicians should resign if they are involved in any form of corruption. This has always been my guideline as a politician," Su said.

Even stricter standards should be applied to the president, the premier added.

Additional reporting by Jimmy Chuang

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