Presidential office denies tracking Wang
By Lauly Li ,The China Post
December 12, 2013, 12:05 am TWN
The Presidential Office yesterday denied claims published in a report by a local magazine that President Ma Ying-jeou had tracked Legislative Yuan Speaker Wang Jin-pyng's (王金平) private schedule to gain political advantage.
The Chinese-language Next Magazine yesterday published an article claiming that the Special Investigation Division (SID) had attached a file containing Wang's private schedule when submitting an investigative report on an alleged influence-peddling case involving Wang and Democratic Progressive Party caucus whip (DPP) Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘) to Ma.
A source in the Presidential Office said that the content of the report submitted by Prosecutor-General Huang Shih-ming (黃世銘) to the president mostly covers the SID's press conference on Sept. 6.
On Sept. 6 the SID held a press conference condemning Wang for his alleged involvement in a lobbying case and revealed the content of phone conversations between Wang and Ker.
The Presidential Office said that Ma “absolutely” did not investigate Wang for political purposes, noting that Wang's personal schedule was not included in the attachment provided by the SID. The Presidential Office said it regretted the untrue speculation published by Next Magazine.
According to the article, the SID provided Ma with chronologically ordered details of the personal daily schedule of Wang, but the document was labeled to indicate that the schedule was Ker's. The magazine also claimed that Wang's private schedule as revealed by the SID was not related to the case involving allegations of improper lobbying, and the report went on to accuse the SID and Ma of tracking Wang for political purposes.
SID spokesman John Chang (張進豐) said Huang offered relevant information to Ma, but noted that the SID had nevertheless “googled” Wang's private and public events on the Internet, claiming that the action was not for “political purposes.”
Chang further explained that in the course of the SID's investigation the case of alleged influence-peddling, the SID had “googled” Wang's schedule for June 28 and June 29 in an attempt to confirm Wang's whereabouts, given phone records which indicated the locations of calls he placed on those days.
As to revealing Wang's schedule to the president, Chang said the SID provided the information to Ma in order to gain the president's trust on the matter.
When asked to issue remarks on the article in Next Magazine, Legislative Yuan Speaker Wang refused comment.
DPP Urges Ma to Explain
DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) criticized the behavior of those involved in the matter, saying that in a democratic country, it is not acceptable for anyone to abuse their control of the state apparatus to investigate the opposition and the Legislative Yuan speaker for political purposes.
Su said that any officials found to have been involved in the incident should step down immediately, adding that President Ma should explain the matter to the public immediately.
Premier to Attend Court Session
The Taipei District Court yesterday said a three-judge-panel has decided to summon Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) to attend a court session as a witness over Huang's case on Dec. 27.
Prosecutor-General Huang in October was indicted by Taipei prosecutors over allegations of briefing the president over ongoing investigations into the alleged lobbying case.