Democratic Progressive Party lawmakers yesterday stepped up the pressure on former National Palace Museum director Feng Ming-chu (馮明珠) over a controversy surrounding her new position as an adviser to Beijing’s Palace Museum.
The lawmakers demanded that the National Palace Museum, the Cabinet and the Control Yuan launch an investigation into Feng for allegedly violating revolving-door regulations and a travel ban to China.
According to the Civil Servant Services Act (公務員服務法), public servants are forbidden from becoming board directors, supervisors, managers, shareholders or advisers in companies with direct relations to their work within three years of their retirement from their government posts.
The legislators also demanded that Feng quit a post in Beijing immediately and return to Taiwan to face an investigation.
If Feng refuses to return, she should formally emigrate to China and stop receiving a pension in Taiwan as a retired civil servant, the lawmakers said.
Feng, who retired from her job at the museum in May, has been found to have visited China several times over the past few months.
The legislators alleged that before leaving the museum, Feng approved her own application to shorten the period in which she would be forbidden from traveling to China from three years to three months.
According to the Act Governing Relations Between the People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area (台灣地區與大陸地區人民關係條例), former political appointees and local government heads who plan to travel to China within three years of leaving office are required to obtain prior approval from a screening committee composed of officials from government agencies.
However, the law also contains a provisory clause that allows discretion in shortening or extending the restriction period, based on the nature of the applicant’s position.
Fifty-eight officials from the former administration of president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), including Feng, and former local government chiefs from the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) have abused the clause to shorten the period in which they are forbidden from traveling to China, DPP Legislator Lee Chun-yi (李俊俋) said.
Feng has said that the three-month period was permitted because she was not involved in confidential work, adding that her appointment at the museum in Beijing is an honorary position with no pay.
In a similar case, former Ministry of Justice Investigation Bureau deputy chief Wu Li-chen (吳莉貞) traveled to China on July 16 last year, after she retired, having shortened her own restriction period to just 34 days, DPP Legislator Tuan Yi-kang (段宜康) said on Facebook late on Sunday.
Two months before her retirement, Wu directed the bureau’s secretariat office to remove her from the list of officials responsible for confidential duties who are subject to the three-year ban, Tuan said.
As a result, the ban on Wu was lifted on Aug. 19, last year, Tuan said.
FATAL FIRE: The health department is trying to contact the inspector who visited the site of the illegal nursing home to ask why they did not advise follow-up checks The Taipei City Government yesterday said that a health department inspector last year had visited the site of a long-term care facility in Neihu District (內湖) after receiving a report questioning its status. A fire broke out at the facility on Tuesday afternoon, killing three people. The Taipei Fire Department said that it received a report about a fire on the first floor of a four-story residential building on Kangning Road Sec. 1 at 2:38pm on Tuesday, firefighters arrived at 2:43pm and the fire was put out by 3:07pm. The firefighters found three men in beds and rushed them to hospital for
Taipei City Councilor Wang Hao (王浩) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Monday called for security improvements to the MRT, as fare evasion has increased more than 13-fold on the metropolitan railway system over the past five years. Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) has spoken out against fare evasion and other contraventions of MRT regulations, but since he took office in 2015 the number of contraventions has more than doubled, Wang said, adding that there were 537 cases in 2015 compared with 959 last year. A video was posted to YouTube in June showing people how to evade paying a fare,
FEELING MISUNDERSTOOD: Media speculation has fueled confusion about the KMT’s reasons for skipping a Chinese forum and delaying an AIT meeting, party sources said The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Sunday said that it is not seeking to improve relations with the US or China at the expense of the other, and that its relations with the countries would be topic-based. The party has faced questions over its foreign policy after it on Monday last week announced its withdrawal from the annual Straits Forum and delayed planned talks with the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT). The party has also taken a tough stance on the importation of US meat containing ractopamine, while also lambasting China for increasing its military activity in and around the Taiwan Strait. Following
Yuchi Township (魚池) fishers have appealed to the Nantou County Government for help in dealing with an invasive fish species in Sun Moon Lake (日月潭), where it has devastated the local ecosystem. Fishers at Sun Moon Lake have been using electrofishing in an attempt to eliminate the giant snakehead fish — found in Africa and Southeast Asia — but they have struggled to keep up with the growing population of the species, which breeds during September and October, the county government said on Monday. The county has contacted researchers at National Tsing Hua University, saying it hoped they could come up