The ongoing “Occupy Legislature” student protest against the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and the conviction of former prosecutor-general Huang Shih-ming (黃世銘) share the same root cause — the violation of procedural justice, academics and lawyers said yesterday.
Huang resigned immediately after he was sentenced to 14 months in jail on Friday in the first trial of his case for leaking information to President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) in an ongoing investigation into claims of influence peddling last year.
Hundreds of students have been occupying the legislative chamber since late Tuesday over the KMT caucus’ sending of the cross-strait service trade agreement to the plenary session without substantial review in the joint committee.
Photo: Fang Pin-chao, Taipei Times
“Both cases shared the same distinctiveness of the violation of procedural justice,” Kao Jung-chih (高榮志), executive director of the Judicial Reform Foundation, said in a speech to hundreds of students who have been staging overnight sit-ins in front of the legislative compound to show support to the ones who occupied the chamber.
“Whether people supported the service trade deal with China or not, I believe the vast majority of them would oppose the opaque negotiation process and concluding the review in 30 seconds,” Kao said.
He was referring to KMT Legislator Chang Ching-chung (張慶忠), convener of the March 17 joint review committee meeting, who took advantage of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers’ boycott and directly sent the pact to the plenary without it being discussed.
“Huang Shih-ming’s conviction had an important implication to government officials who are about to implement measures under the cross-strait service trade agreement if the deal takes effect eventually,” lawyer Huang Di-ying (黃帝穎) said.
The conviction of Huang Shih-ming showed that public servants who committed illegal acts would be punished, the lawyer said.
As the service trade pact was sent to the plenary without review and a due legislation procedure, the pact could be declared illegal, he said.
Huang Di-ying added that the trade deal could benefit a specific group of businesspeople, so government officials who implement the agreement could violate the Anti-Corruption Act (貪污治罪條例) and would be subject to a sentence up to five years.
Both cases also taught Taiwanese a lesson, he said, that appropriate systems must be established to prevent the state and those who are in power abuse their right.
“That was why we think the Special Investigation Division should be abolished and a mechanism monitoring cross-strait negotiation and agreements should be established,” Huang Di-ying said.
LIABILITIES MULLED: New Taipei City Mayor Hou You-yi said Taipei would find out if the firm was legally registered, the guide was licensed and the weather was assessed The assets of Tian Da Local Nature Co are to be frozen after at least four people died after falling into the Beishi River (北勢溪) on an outing the company had organized on Saturday, the Taipei City Government said yesterday. Six people — two adults and four children — were washed away by a flash flood on the river in New Taipei City’s Hubaotan (虎豹潭) area. They were participating in a Nature Joy Camp outdoor activity with a group of 16 adults and 15 children led by a guide surnamed Su (蘇). As of 4:30pm yesterday, four of the missing had been
Taiwanese worked more hours than people in all but three other countries in the world last year, Ministry of Labor data showed. Singapore placed first in average hours worked among the 40 economies surveyed, with an average of 2,288 hours per worker last year, the data showed. The city-state was followed by Colombia with 2,172 hours — based on 2019 data — and Mexico with 2,124 hours, it showed. Taiwan came in fourth, with 2,021 hours, it showed. South Korean workers clocked the third-most hours in Asia, with 1,908 hours, followed by Japan with 1,598 hours, it showed. However, compared with 2019, the survey found
The US 7th Fleet yesterday confirmed that a US Navy ship transited the Taiwan Strait on Thursday and Friday. “The Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS Dewey [DDG 105] conducted a Taiwan Strait transit in cooperation with Royal Canadian Navy [RCN] Halifax-class frigate, HMCS Winnipeg, October 14-15, 2021,” the US 7th Fleet said in a statement. “Dewey’s and Winnipeg’s transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the commitment of the United States and our allies and partners to a free and open Indo-Pacific. Cooperation like this represents the centerpiece of our approach to a secure and prosperous region,” it added. The transit marked the
‘COUNTERPRODUCTIVE’: The German, French and Singaporean missions said that Taiwan’s COVID-19 restrictions are hindering local projects and business operations Several foreign missions in Taiwan have urged the government to ease its strict COVID-19 border controls, which they say are hurting in-person exchanges and business operations. The missions made the appeal in response to media inquiries on how the border controls have affected their respective countries’ exchanges with Taiwan, amid growing concerns voiced privately by Taiwan-based foreign offices and businesses regarding the restrictions. Taiwan has maintained strict entry requirements since March last year, generally prohibiting most arrivals except for citizens and foreign residents, while it has required those who enter the country to undergo a stringent 14-day quarantine. Although the rules have been