Couple allegedly starve baby
A young couple have been accused of letting their baby girl starve to death because they were obsessed with playing online games and forgot to feed her regularly, police said yesterday. The one-year-old weighed only 4kg, or half the average size for a girl her age, when the couple reported her death earlier this week, the police said. Media reported that police found the toddler reduced to “just skin and bone and with sunken eyes,” while a gaming Web site was flickering on the computer monitor next to her crib. Prosecutors will look into the cause of the girl’s death and determine whether her parents, in their early 20s, were responsible. They face up to two years in prison for manslaughter if convicted.
Flora expo attendance up
Attendance at the Taipei International Flora Expo broke the 5 million mark yesterday, thanks largely to this month’s warmer weather, an expo spokesperson said. A lucky draw was held yesterday to celebrate hitting the attendance milestone. Prizes included an electric scooter, electric bicycle, airline tickets and hotel coupons. An expo spokesperson said more than 7.02 million tickets have been sold so far, generating NT$1.09 billion (US$36.6 million) in revenue. The expo closes on April 25, so expo officials are urging people not to wait if they intend to visit.
Few women advance
Women might account for 38.77 percent of the nation’s civil service, but they occupy just 25.44 percent of senior rankings in the system, according to the Ministry of Civil Service’s latest statistics. It said the disproportionately low number of woman in senior posts could be attributed to two factors: They tend to join the government later than men and more leave after getting married or having children. As of the end of last year, Taiwan had 340,106 civil servants. If military, education and other government employees were included, the total number of people on the government payroll would be 835,219.
For fiscal year 2009, local taxpayers spent a total of NT$1.1 trillion on civil service salaries and other benefits, the ministry said. The 6,572 Aborigines accounted for 1.92 percent of employees, while the 4,945 disabled civil servants accounted for 1.9 percent of all government jobs.