President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday dismissed speculation over the existence of a DVD alleged to show Ma and former ICRT DJ Charles Mack having intimate relations, saying the media should disregard groundless rumors.
“It’s incredible that media outlets allow themselves to be hoodwinked by such a ridiculous story. It’s a groundless rumor and there’s nothing to it,” Ma said yesterday during an interview with Era TV.
Ma made the remarks in response to an accusation in court on Monday by former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) that Special Investigation Panel Prosecutor Wu Wen-chung (吳文忠) had prevented a scandal during last year’s presidential election by suppressing the DVD.
Chen said the DVD belonged to Mack’s wife, Chang Wei-chin (張瑋津), who said she was a good friend of Chen and his wife, Wu Shu-jen (吳淑珍). Chen said Chang had intended to use the DVD to ruin Ma’s presidential prospects last year, but the prosecutor prevented her from publicizing it.
Ma said he and his campaign team had heard the rumor at the time, adding that “we thought it was a stupid rumor.”
“Such a rumor would lower the tone of the presidential campaign ... and I feel very sorry that it has been brought up again one year after the election,” he said.
At a separate setting yesterday, Ma’s sexual orientation was a central topic on the legislature’s “state affairs forum,” during which Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Chai Trong-rong (蔡同榮) called on Ma to come out of the closet if he is indeed gay.
When asked by reporters for comment on Thursday, former premier Frank Hsieh (謝長廷), Ma’s opponent in last year’s presidential election, refused to say anything to safeguard the president’s dignity.
Additional reporting by staff writer