The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and the Chinese-language United Daily News on Monday denied allegations that the newspaper was founded with KMT gold.
The denial came after former Presidential Office secretary-general Chen Shih-meng (陳師孟) earlier that day called on the Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee to investigate the paper as a KMT affiliate.
United Daily News Group founder Wang Tih-wu (王惕吾), also a former KMT Central Standing Committee member, had received 100kg of gold from then-president Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石) to establish the newspaper, Chen said.
Chen on Monday underwent inquiries as a Control Yuan member nominee along with Yang Fang-yuan (楊芳婉), Chao Yung-ching (趙永清), Tsai Chung-yi (蔡崇義) and Yang Fang-ling (楊芳玲) at an interim meeting at the legislature in Taipei.
New Power Party Legislator Freddy Lim (林昶佐) asked the nominees if they were committed to investigating not only the KMT, but also people who benefited from the chaos in the post-World War II period to procure national assets for themselves.
Yang Fang-ling said that while people could be investigated by the Control Yuan, the time for administering justice for asset-related violations during the period has long expired.
Yang Fang-yuan disagreed, saying that national assets that fell into private hands should be investigated because they belong to the nation, adding that the Control Yuan should seek corrective actions from the government bodies that failed to pursue the assets.
It might be difficult to pursue KMT members who have registered national assets in their own names if the party itself does not pursue the matter, Chen said, adding that the government must still investigate them.
Chen cited a passage in the book The Past Happenings of Gold (黃金往事), which said that Chiang was given 4,500kg of gold from the state treasury when he stepped down from office, then gave 100kg of the gold and some foreign currency to Wang to establish the United Daily Group, he said.
The KMT called the allegations “reckless accusations,” while the United Daily News said the claims were “baseless.”
“Chen is relying on speculation written in a book; he has no concrete evidence of anything. This paper is deeply regretful over [these assertions],” the paper said.
Wang combined the Popular Daily, the National and the Economic Times, three contemporary Chinese-language daily newspapers, to form the United Daily Group, the paper said, adding that it went through hard times at the beginning when Wang had ask different creditors to borrow money for workers’ salaries.
“Chen’s assertion that the paper’s funding came from the KMT is entirely baseless,” it added.
The Taipei High Administrative Court has already questioned the constitutionality of the committee’s operations, KMT spokeswoman Chung Pei-chun (鍾沛君) said.
“That Chen can read a book and use it as the basis for his accusations raises concerns about the future of the Control Yuan,” she said.
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