Tue, May 26, 2015 - Page 3 News List

Ko’s aide Hung to be punished for media leaks

By Abraham Gerber  /  Staff reporter

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je, right, and aide Hung Chi-kune attend a session of the Taipei City Council yesterday. Hung has been referred to the Department of Personnel for disciplinary measures after criticism from Taipei City councilors.

Photo: Wang Yi-sung, Taipei Times

Hung Chi-kune (洪智坤), a close aide of Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲), was referred to the Department of Personnel for disciplinary measures after criticism from Taipei City councilors. However, how Hung is to be punished remains unclear.

The Department of Government Ethics yesterday announced that an internal investigation had found Hung responsible for leaking city documents related to controversial city development projects to favored media outlets.

Ko yesterday delivered his first official report to the city council on the controversial Taipei Dome, Taipei Twin Towers, Taipei New Horizon, Syntrend Creative Park and MeHAS City development projects, which were outsourced to private contractors under previous city administrations.

Ko’s report was delayed by 30 minutes due to city councilor protests over Hung’s leaks, with councilors from the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) calling for Hung to be fired.

Taipei City Council Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) whip Rosalia Wu (吳思瑤) said that DPP councilors were also “suspicious” and “angry” about the city government’s “manipulation” of the media. She called for the city government to establish standard procedures to ensure that city councilors are not, in effect, “stripped” of their rights to requisition city documents, and called for Hung to be disciplined immediately.

In his report, Ko said that he had no prior knowledge of Hung’s actions, adding that Hung’s case was yesterday to be sent to the Department of Personnel for disciplinary measures.

Department of Personnel Commissioner Huai Hsu (懷敘) said that, while a department meeting had resulted in a recommendation regarding how Hung should be disciplined, the department could not openly discuss details until Ko signed off on the recommendation.

Ko reiterated that, in the future, all documents requisitioned by city’s Clean Government Committee would be posted online to resolve the problem of certain media outlets receiving information before anyone else.

In response to city councilors’ questions, Ko added that leakage of the committee’s report on the Taipei Dome case to radio host Clara Chou (周玉蔻) threatened to “bankrupt” the committee’s credibility, and he promised to initiate an investigation. Chou had posted a draft committee report online prior to its final approval by the full committee.

Department of Government Ethics Commissioner Liu Ming-wu (劉明武) yesterday said Hung was not the only source of the “unprecedented” leak of city documents, which had been occurring since February. Hung’s case was just the first phase of the department’s investigation, he said.

Ko also made controversial remarks about handicapped people in response to city councilors’ demands that Hung be fired, stating that, “it is difficult for handicapped people to find work.”

Hung walks with a staggered limp and was observed exiting the Taipei City Council building in a wheelchair.

Ko apologized for his remark on handicapped people after criticism from Wu, later clarifying that he meant to say he did not feel it was fair to “cut off” Hung without giving him a chance to change his ways.

Hung said that he would handle official documents in accordance with city regulations in the future.

He reiterated that none of the documents in question were secret and that city residents had a right to know their content.

This story has been viewed 2254 times.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top