A by-election will be held on Saturday, Jan. 26, next year to fill a post in the second electoral district in Greater Taichung left vacant by former Non-Partisan Solidarity Union legislator Yen Ching-piao (顏清標), the Central Election Commission said yesterday. Yen’s status as a lawmaker was revoked last month after a guilty verdict on a corruption charge was finalized by the Supreme Court. The commission said that those interested in running may register as candidates from Dec. 17 through Dec. 21. The commission said it would examine candidates’ qualifications before Jan. 3 and determine the order in which the names of eligible candidates appear on the ballot at a draw before Jan. 8. The list of candidates is to be published on Jan. 15. Ballots will be counted immediately after the polling stations close at 4pm on Jan. 26 and the winner will be officially announced before Feb. 1, it added.
State donates to CARE
The government donated 100,000 euros (US$129,320) to a Paris-based non-profit organization on Thursday in support of an education program for underprivileged children in Central America. The program, promoted by CARE France, is aimed at eliminating child labor and encouraging normal schooling for children in 14 cities in Nicaragua, Guatemala and El Salvador. It is set to run for 30 months starting on Nov. 22 next year, with the EU contributing 80 percent of the 1.25 million euros needed for the cause. CARE France vice president Daniel Thierry described the donation as an important step by Taiwan to participate in international humanitarian efforts. Taiwan’s representative to France, Michel Lu (呂慶龍), said this latest cooperation with CARE France has created a very good model for Taiwan to contribute to multilateral efforts.
Ex-KMT lawmaker indicted
Former Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) legislator Wang Chih-hsiung (王志雄) was indicted by Taipei prosecutors yesterday on suspicion of involvement in an embezzlement scandal. Prosecutors said Wang established Convenient Life Group and formed five sub-companies, and invited the public to invest in the companies, but he allegedly embezzled NT$30 million (US$1 million) from the group between 1997 and 2000. Wang Chih-hsiung, the son of former Chung Hsing Bank president Wang Yu-yun (王玉雲), was a vice chairman of the Chung Hsing Bank. He fled to China in 2007 amid several investigations into allegations of illegal loans made by the bank and embezzlement. He was repatriated last month by the Ministry of Justice’s Investigation Bureau agents after being arrested by Chinese authorities in Shanghai.
Taipei tops quality survey
Taipei ranked first among the nation’s 22 cities and counties in terms of quality of life, according to a survey by Kainan University published yesterday. The survey by the Taoyuan County school said Taipei placed first in six of 11 indices — housing, income, jobs, community, education, environment, governance, health, life satisfaction, safety and work-life balance. Hsinchu City was ranked second, followed by Hsinchu County, Taichung City and New Taipei City (新北市). The survey, the first such assessment made by the university, was based on the “Your Better Life Index” conducted by the Paris-based Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.