Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) yesterday dismissed speculation about the timing of the resignation of Department of Urban Development commissioner Ting Yu-chun (丁育群) amid the ongoing investigation on corruption in the Taipei Twin Towers project, and stressed that the city government would cooperate with the probe.
Hau on Monday approved the resignation of Ting, a member of the 17-member review committee for the project, and invited National Chengchi University land economics professor Ben Tai-ming (邊泰銘) to take over the post.
Ting, 60, said he had offered his resignation in 2011 due to poor health and was determined to resign this year after he was diagnosed with liver cancer in January. However, his resignation has sparked speculation he may have been involved in the scandal.
Hau expressed regret over the speculation and said that the public should not jump to conclusions before the results of the investigation are announced.
“The preliminary investigation found he was not involved in the scandal. Speculation [about his role in the project] has hurt commissioner Ting’s reputation, forcing him to discuss his disease in public,” he said.
Ting joined Hau’s team in 2008, and will resume his post as an urban development professor at Chinese Culture University in September.
Prosecutors detained Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Taipei City Councilor Lai Su-ju (賴素如) over her alleged role in the bribery scandal. She allegedly agreed to help a multinational consortium win the bid for the Taipei Twin Towers project in exchange for a kickback of NT$10 million (US$334,700).
Taipei City Department of Finance Commissioner Chiu Da-chan (邱大展) was summoned by prosecutors last week to explain his role in the project amid allegations that he had leaked the list of project review committee members to the developer.
Amid speculation that top city officials and more Taipei City councilors may be involved in the bribery scandal, Hau said the city government would respect the investigation, but prosecutors should speed up the probe and put an end to rumors about the case.
“We expect the prosecutors to find out the truth about the scandal and conclude the investigation as soon as possible. On the other hand, we urge the public not to jump into conclusions and we do not want any city officials to be hurt by groundless speculation,” he said.