Thu, Oct 26, 2006 - Page 3 News List

Shih lists 10 reasons for Chen to go

By Mo Yan-chih and Jimmy Chuang  /  STAFF REPORTERS

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislators insist that the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics and the Ministry of Audit clarify the the regulations regarding the use of the Presidential Office's special state affairs expense account at a forum held at the Legislative Yuan yesterday.

PHOTO: CNA

The leader of the campaign aimed at ousting President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) yesterday listed 10 reasons why the president should resign, arguing that both the president and the first lady must be prosecuted over the alleged misuse of the president's special allowance fund.

The campaign leader, former Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) chairman Shih Ming-teh (施明德), yesterday expressed concern about the outcome of the judicial inquiry into the case, and urged Prosecutor Eric Chen (陳瑞仁) not to succumb to political interference.

"When Chiou I-jen (邱義仁) said that Chen should step down if he or his wife were found to have been involved in graft, I think his words implied that the prosecutor's report has already been sent to the higher authorities," Shih said during a press conference held in Taipei.

Chiou, the secretary-general of the National Security Council, made the comments on Monday.

Arguing that Chiou made the remarks knowing that the investigation had found no evidence of wrongdoing on the president's behalf and would not prosecute him, the campaign said its legal team had carried out its own investigation and offered 10 reasons why the president should resign.

According to the campaign's news coordinator, Chang Fu-chung (張富忠), Chen has failed the nation in that: secret diplomacy violates the Constitution because it denies the Legislative Yuan of the right to review the budget for diplomacy; the special allowance fund should only be used for the president's inspection tours or for him to reward staff or receive guests and should not be embezzled; the president and his wife diverted cash from the fund into their own pockets; the president should not have rejected a request by the Ministry of Audit to review the receipts; the president admitted that he and his wife had collected receipts for the fund.

"Prosecutor [Eric] Chen is playing a crucial role, standing in a historic position. He should take the people and justice into consideration, rather than his own future," Shih said.

Chang said the possibility of the president not being prosecuted over the special allowance fund investigation should be zero, according to the camp's investigation.

The Presidential Office yesterday dismissed Shih's allegation that prosecutors had already submitted a copy of the indictment statement of President Chen's special allowance fund to the president.

"There is no such a thing. It is pure speculation," Presidential Office Spokesman David Lee (李南陽) said.

Lee said the Presidential Office respected the judicial inquiry into the matter. He said they would not meddle in the case nor engage in any speculation or pre-judgment.

Meanwhile, Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) yesterday stated his confidence that President Chen would agree with the comments he made on Tuesday.

When fielding questions from legislators, Su said that the president should quit if he or his family members were found guilty.

"I am the premier who was assigned by the president and I know what I should and should not say. I know my place," Su said when approached by the press for comment on Tuesday's statement.

"I believe that he [the president] would say the same on the same issue," Su added.

Su said that what he said at the legislature on Tuesday had always been his position regarding the allegations that the first family might be involved in corruption.

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