Legislature committee likely to act on Special Investigation Division
CNATAIPEI -- The Judiciary and Organic Laws and Statutes Committee of the Legislative Yuan will continue to discuss a proposal to abolish the Special Investigation Division (SID) Monday, with the relevant amendment likely to be approved, Wu Yi-chen, one of the committee's two conveners, said Sunday.
October 7, 2013, 12:06 am TWN
A committee meeting scheduled for Monday morning is set to discuss an amendment to the Court Organic Act which would dismantle the SID, an unit under the Supreme Prosecutors Office. State Prosecutor-General Huang Shyh-ming, who is in charge of the SID, is expected to be present at the Legislature to answer questions.
Wu, a lawmaker with the opposition Democratic Progressive Party, said that based on recent developments, she hopes the 13-member committee will pass the amendment, which would open the door for making the SID “become history.”
Even if members of the ruling Kuomintang (KMT) oppose, she said the amendment could be sent out of the committee for cross-party consultations to decide its future.
Lu Hsueh-chang, a KMT lawmaker and the other convener of the committee, called for level-headedness and expressed doubts about the benefits of abolishing the SID.
Formed in 2007, the SID is charged with investigating suspected corruption amongst senior officials — include the head of state — as well as generals and flag officers, along with major criminal cases.
The KMT holds a 9-4 majority on the committee, although it is not clear how the vote will go given the hand that the special unit has in the current political turmoil.
The SID revealed on Sept. 6 that Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng called Justice Minister Tseng Yung-fu and Chen Shou-huang, chief of the Taiwan High Prosecutors Office, in late June in an alleged attempt to prevent a prosecutor under Chen from making an appeal against a fellow lawmaker, who had just been acquitted in a breach-of-trust case.
The KMT, under the leadership of President Ma Ying-jeou as party chairman, said Wang brought shame to the party by compromising judicial independence. The party revoked his membership as punishment, a move condemned by Wang's supporters in the Legislative Yuan.
The debate over the SID's future is part of the political fallout from the ensuing confrontation between the legislative and executive branches.