Tue, Nov 12, 2013 - Page 3 News List

DPP mulls change in picking top prosecutor

‘INFORMATION LEAK’:Lawmakers are planning to remove the prosecutor-general’s security of tenure amid accusations that he has refused to cooperate in a probe

By Chris Wang  /  Staff reporter

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus yesterday said it was considering an amendment that would give the power to appoint the prosecutor-general to the minister of justice, rather than the president, and to remove the top prosecutor’s security of tenure.

The Organic Act of Courts (法院組織法) states that the prosecutor-general is appointed by the president and is guaranteed a four-year tenure.

The DPP caucus says this is why Prosecutor-General Huang Shih-ming (黃世銘) has dealt with the recent controversy in the Legislative Yuan in the manner in which he did and has refused to step down.

Huang has been accused of leaking information about an ongoing investigation against Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) to President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), but is immune from prosecution before the end of his term in 2016.

The DPP caucus is considering the proposed amendment as a countermeasure to Huang’s noncooperation after he refused to attend a meeting on Friday hosted by a document request task force commissioned under the the Legislative Yuan’s Judiciary and Organic Laws and Statutes Committee and to provide his personal telephone records for investigation.

The DPP’s proposal would transfer the president’s right to appoint the prosecutor-general to the minister of justice, and to make interpellation by lawmakers in the legislature the top prosecutor’s obligation, DPP Legislator Gao Jyh-peng (高志鵬) told a press conference.

Huang’s citing of the Organic Act of Courts as an exemption may be in violation of the Article 67 of the Constitution, which authorizes the legislature to invite government officials for interpellation, DPP Legislator Wu Ping-jui (吳秉叡) said.

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) caucus whip Lin Te-fu (林德福) said the caucus did not rule out supporting the proposal, “since Huang had not been handling his case well recently.”

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