Wed, Jul 20, 2011 - Page 2 News List

Taiwan News Quick Take

Staff Writer, with CNA

CULTURE

Asian Hakka group to form

Hakka organizations from nine Asian countries will establish a Taiwanese Hakka association for Asia on Nov. 14, according to the Council of Hakka Affairs. Chung Shih-dah (鍾仕達), who heads a Taiwanese Hakka association in Singapore, will be the chairman of the new association, which will promote Hakka culture throughout the continent. The nine groups are from Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia, Japan, Philippines, Brunei and Cambodia. Representatives of the groups visited the council on Monday and expressed their hopes of extending Hakka culture’s reach to a larger audience, while inviting council Minister Huang Yu-chen (黃玉振) to the association’s opening. Huang said the government is also organizing a global Hakka gathering from Nov. 15 to Nov. 17 that will host a series of conferences and field trips. Hakkas represent the second-largest ethnic group in Taiwan, with a population estimated at between 4 million and 5 million.

CRIME

Corruption agency launched

The Ministry of Justice’s Agency Against Corruption will be inaugurated today, the ministry said yesterday. Chou Chih-jung (周志榮), previously a counselor with the ministry, will head the agency. The agency’s aim is to fight corruption, raise the conviction rate in corruption cases and protect human rights, Chou said. The body boasts a staff of 180 people, including ethics officers and investigators selected from government officials, investigative agencies and police officers. The ethics officers will be sent to local government organizations to look for evidence of possible corruption, Chou said. The agency’s investigators will be integrated with law enforcement and will look into cases once they receive tipoffs from ethics officers, Chou said, adding that the cases would then be handed over to prosecutors.

TRANSPORT

Fatigue top concern: poll

More than 95 percent of respondents to a survey on transportation issues voiced concern over driver fatigue among public transport drivers, the Consumers’ Foundation said yesterday. The foundation’s online survey also found that the majority of the approximately 400 respondents wanted more efficient road maintenance and additional incentives to encourage the use of public transport. Su Jau-ming (蘇昭銘), convener of the foundation’s transportation committee, said a real-time information system should be applied throughout the country and that bus operators should not allow their drivers to work overtime. According to the foundation’s statistics, from 2005 to 2009, there were six major highway accidents in which 22 people died and 60 were injured because a driver was exhausted.

SOCIETY

Summer vouchers unveiled

Changhua County Commissioner Cho Po-yuan (卓伯源) yesterday launched a program of free vouchers for disadvantaged students in the county to ensure they receive lunches during the two-month summer vacation. The county’s Department of Education, which has provided free meals for students during the school year since February 2009, said the summer vouchers would be distributed to eligible children. It said that up to 8,000 students, including children who have suffered domestic calamities, will be eligible to receive the vouchers and exchange them for free meals every day at selected restaurants, convenience stores and shops near schools.

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