National Taiwan University (NTU) yesterday called on the Ministry of Education to speedily ratify the election of its president-elect, Kuan Chung-ming (管中閔) on the grounds that a review of its election process found no flaws.
Kuan, originally scheduled to be inaugurated on Feb 1, was accused of breaching research ethics, a conflict of interest with his holding an independent directorship with Taiwan Mobile Co and contravening the law by also holding a teaching position at the University of Xiamen.
The university’s presidential election committee complied with a ministry request in January following Kuan’s selection to reconvene and inform all members that Kuan was a Taiwan Mobile director, which it did on Jan. 31, the school said in a statement.
While Kuan’s candidacy application had not mentioned his Taiwan Mobile position, it would not have affected the committee’s final decision, the committee said in the statement.
The Jan. 31 meeting concluded that Kuan’s candidacy was correct, the committee added.
The committee complied with the ministry’s request in May to again review the election process, which it did and found no major flaws, the committee said.
The committee’s decision has been upheld by two university affairs meetings, and the ministry should approve Kuan as the school’s president as soon as possible, the statement said.
The university also said that it has yet to receive a reply to its decision in June to challenge the ministry in court.
However, Student Association director Wu Yi-jou (吳奕柔) criticized the university, saying that it never addressed the alleged illegalities that Kuan was accused of.
“We do not agree with the statement,” and the university should begin a new election process to seek another candidate to uphold students’ rights, Wu said.
Wu said that she has said several times that Kuan’s holding an outside job as an independent company director was illegal, adding that in the case of a conflict of interest between the candidate and committee members, the committee should abide by the Administrative Procedure Act (行政程序法).
She was referring to committee member Tsai Ming-hsing (蔡明興), who is a vice president of Taiwan Mobile.
The ministry has the authority to appoint a university’s president and National Taiwan University should abide by the ministry’s directive to restart the election process, she said.
Additional reporting by Wu Po-hsuan
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