Thu, Dec 13, 2007 - Page 4 News List

KMT caucus accuses COA official of abusing power

By Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTER

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) caucus yesterday accused Council of Agriculture (COA) Chairman Su Jia-chyuan (蘇嘉全) of abusing power to give his wife promotions, and threatened to boycott legislation on the council's agricultural biotechnology park, which would benefit his wife if passed.

Su's wife Hung Heng-chu (洪恆珠), the deputy director of the preparatory office of the park, would be promoted from a 10th rank civil servant position to 12th rank, with a NT$500,000 (US15,400) annual salary raise if the statute passed the legislature.

KMT caucus secretary-general Kuo Su-chun (郭素春) condemned Su for giving Hung, a former deputy director of the Pingtung County Election Commission two merits within three months while serving as Pingtung County commissioner.

"If this statute was passed, Hung would be promoted again with a big salary raise. She is obviously enjoying privileges to be promoted so fast in such a short time," Kuo told a press conference.

In response to the accusations, director of the preparatory office Chen Chien-bin (陳建斌) who was also present at the press conference, defended Hung's professionalism in the field and urged the KMT caucus not to hinder the establishment of the park.

KMT Legislator Alex Fei (費鴻泰) said it usually took about 10 years for civil servants to be promoted from 9th rank to 12th rank, but Hung got the promotion within two to three years.

Lee Jo-i (李若一), minister of the Civil Servant Ministry, said the promotion of Hung followed legal procedure, and that it was not up to the minister to judge whether such a promotion is fair.

Su also released a statement later yesterday rebutting the KMT caucus' accusation.

"[The charges] have seriously damaged my personal reputation and my lawyers have been instructed to carry out libel proceedings," the statement said.

Su said he left the Pingtung County government in April 2004, almost a year before Su's wife received the promotions that Kuo alleged are undeserved.

Additional reporting by Angelica Oung

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