MORAKOT: THE AFTERMATH: Ma, Liu face Control Yuan scrutiny

ACCOUNTABILITY:The Constitution stipulates that the president and vice president can be removed from their posts if Grand Justices uphold an impeachment motion

By Shih Hsiu-chuan  /  STAFF REPORTER

Sun, Aug 23, 2009 - Page 3

Control Yuan President Wang Chien-shien said yesterday the government watchdog would look into the responsibilities of President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) and Premier Liu Chao-shiuan (劉兆玄) in the government’s handling of the Typhoon Morakot emergency.

A number of Control Yuan members have said that they would like to submit a report on the subject to the legislature, the organ authorized by the Constitution to impeach the president and vice president.

In accordance with the additional articles to the Constitution, the nation’s president or vice president can be removed from their posts if Grand Justices of the Judicial Yuan uphold an impeachment motion initiated by the legislature.

The impeachment process against the president or vice president can be initiated if the proposal is made by more than one-half of the lawmakers in the legislature and passed by more than two-thirds of legislators, whereupon it would be presented to the Judicial Yuan for adjudication.

Wang had previously said the highest-level official the Control Yuan could investigate was the premier, because it has no constitutional right to impeach Ma.

He did not say whether he supported presenting the Control Yuan’s report to the legislature, which is expected to be completed within three months.

The Control Yuan said that it would review the government’s handling of weather prediction, the disaster rescue system, flood prevention and management projects, soil and water conservation work, roads and bridges maintenance, national land planning, ­post-­disaster accommodation for victims and reconstruction, post-disaster disease control and prevention, as well as price stabilization.

Meanwhile, Control Yuan members Huang Huang-hsiung (黃煌雄) and Yeh Yao-peng (葉耀鵬) said yesterday they would visit Kaohsiung City tomorrow to hear people’s complaints.

Huang said that he and a colleague, Chen Yung-hsiang (陳永祥), were assigned to investigate the tragedy in Siaolin Village (小林), Jiasian Township (甲仙), Kaohsiung County.

The mountain village was buried by mud and debris that were washed down by a powerful landslide caused by heavy rainfall on Aug. 8.

As many as 400 residents of the village are believed to have perished.

Huang said he would try to determine the extent of the damage done to the Pingpu Aboriginal village and culture and whether the surviving residents were properly resettled.

Chen has been tasked with finding out what doomed the village, Huang said.