The Legislative Yuan may open its investigation into allegations of improper lobbying that benefited Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘) as soon as Friday, a member of the legislature’s Discipline Committee said yesterday.
However, Ker has not yet submitted documents related to the investigation, despite saying he would request the investigation himself, Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Lu Hsueh-chang (呂學樟) said.
Lu said he expects Ker will keep his word, while also echoing Ker’s call for an open and transparent investigation that will allow the public to scrutinize any decision made by the DPP-dominated committee.
While the committee has the legal right to summon other people associated with the case, Lu said they were unlikely to question President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) or other top-ranking officials as the incident is seen as an internal affair of the legislature.
DPP Legislator Wu Yi-chen(吳宜臻), who is also on the committee, said the investigation would help clarify the circumstances surrounding the accusations of improper influence and “avoid defamation of lawmakers and accusations of abuse of power.”
Ker and Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng(王金平) were implicated in allegations of use of improper influence by the Special Investigation Division (SID), which on Sept. 6 said the two lawmakers and Ministry of Justice officials used their positions to quash an appeal in a case that had been ruled in Ker’s favor.
According to the SID, Wang asked then-minister of justice Tseng Yung-fu (曾勇夫) and Chen Shou-huang (陳守煌), head of the Taiwan High Prosecutors’ Office, to stop a prosecutor from appealing the case, in which Ker had been acquitted on charges of breach of trust.