Conscription rule tightened
The Ministry of the Interior yesterday said that men who are obliged to serve in the military can no longer delay their service by claiming to be studying after the age of 28. The Regulation on Exemption, Banned and Postponed Enlistment (免役禁役緩徵實施辦法) has been revised to tackle the issue of men, especially some well-known entertainers, who postpone their military service by frequently transferring to different schools. The ministry decided to add the provision that those who study in institutions below college level should not be older than 28 when they ask for a delay of conscription. However, this rule will not apply to those who study in regular schools and graduate institutions, the ministry said. The issue became a topic of debate earlier this year when actor Matthew Lin (明道), 31, registered at his fifth college in 11 years to delay military service, which many male entertainers consider a “career killer.”
Relationship rule clarified
The Ministry of Education on Wednesday clarified again that it did not officially ban amorous relationships between teachers and students. The clarification came after media reports that the ministry officially demanded educational institutions of all levels to make it clear that teacher-student relationships were banned whenever they revised contracts with teachers. Concern over the ministry’s alleged decision was voiced in editorials and by academics, who argued that personal relationships are private and a person’s free will should not be impinged upon by the authorities.
Reporter freed on bail
Tao Huan-chang (陶煥昌), a reporter with the Chinese-language United Evening News, was released on NT$300,000 bail yesterday morning after being questioned by prosecutors on suspicion of insider trading activities that had allegedly netted NT$800 million (US$26.5 million) in illicit profits. The court also granted the prosecutors’ request to detain Tao’s brother in the case. The Taipei District Prosecutors Office said Tao Huan-chang was suspected of violating the Securities Exchange Act (證券交易法) by forming an insider trading ring that included actor-turned--restaurateur Shao Hsin (邵昕), former Chinese Television System anchor Chen Hsin-hung (陳信宏) and Tao’s two brothers. Tao used his own bank accounts and dummy accounts to engage in illegal trading of stocks, which brought in about NT$800 million in profits, prosecutors said. Tao and his elder brother reported to the prosecutors on Wednesday evening for questioning. The Taos said they had been used and did not know the details of the alleged scam.
Aboriginal exhibition opens
The Taiwan Centennial Indigenous Industry opens today in Taipei and runs through Monday, Council of Indigenous Peoples Minister Sun Ta-chuan (孫大川) said yesterday. The event will feature 180 booths run by members of the nation’s 14 Aboriginal tribes selling traditional specialties, handicrafts and other creative items, Sun said. There will also be 18 performances. The expo was designed to help Aborigines find a way to develop a culture--oriented economy, “so that we would know what we could pass on to our children and grandchildren in the next 50 or 100 years,” Sun said. For details about the expo, visit www.tciie.tw.