Fri, May 18, 2012 - Page 2 News List

Councilors accuse Taipei of nepotism

‘RETIREMENT CLUB’:DPP councilors said the Taipei City Government appointed KMT members to special posts as a favor, though they lacked qualifications and experience

By Mo Yan-chih  /  Staff Reporter

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) councilors yesterday accused the Taipei City Government of nepotism, saying it favored KMT members and arranged for their appointment to a city-affiliated company’s board.

Taipei Fishery Marketing Corp appointed former director of the KMT’s Taipei City branch Pan Chia-sen (潘家森) as its chairman last year. Another KMT member, Kuo Fang-mei (郭芳美), the widow of former KMT deputy secretary-general Liao Fung-de (廖風德), has served as a board member since her husband’s death in 2008.

DPP councilors Wu Su-yao (吳思瑤) and Liang Wen-jie (梁文傑) questioned the legitimacy of the two appointments and said the KMT should instead arrange for their appointments to KMT--affiliated organizations.

“Pan had worked under Liao at the KMT’s Organization and Development Committee, and so he insisted that Kuo should stay on the board to take care of his former boss’ wife,” Wu said at the Taipei City Council

“We cannot help but wonder whether the company has become a retirement club for the KMT’s Organization and Development Committee,” Wu said.

Liao, a senior KMT official who was designated minister of the interior shortly after President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) won the election in 2008, died of heart and lung complications after collapsing during a hike in Muzha (木柵) several days before the presidential inauguration.

The appointment of Kuo as a member of the company’s board of directors was proposed by Taipei City’s Department of Economic Development later in 2008. Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) approved the appointment in December that year.

Liang criticized the appointment, saying Kuo, a retired history teacher, does not have the educational background and work experience to qualify for a post in the fishery business.

He said the city government should stop granting favors to KMT members.

“Ma had expressed deep sorrow over Liao’s death, and if the KMT recognizes Liao’s contribution to the party, it should arrange for Kuo to work at KMT-affiliated organizations,” Liang said.

“Why should Taipei residents be responsible for taking care of a KMT official’s widow?” he asked.

Dismissing the accusations of nepotism, Hau said that various factors were taken into consideration when making the appointments.

“The appointments were made under careful consideration, and we believe Kuo can use her expertise in general management in overseeing the company’s operations,” he said.

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