Chuang 'sorry' for Ma remarks
By David Young, The China Post
March 18, 2008, 12:00 am TWN
TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Chuang Kuo-yung, chief secretary of the Ministry of Education (MOE), apologized to Kuomintang presidential candidate Ma Ying-jeou late last night.
At the urging of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislative caucus, Chuang offered the apology to Ma, his family, teachers of the country and public for remarks against the deceased father of the Kuomintang (KMT) standard-bearer.
In a statement, Chuang, who resigned Sunday night, said: "I am sorry for the indiscreet remarks I made and for the trouble they caused the Ma family and public."
At a DPP campaign rally in Taichung Sunday, Chuang charged Ma's deceased father with "patronizing prostitutes" while appearing to be a gentleman.
Chuang made comments against Ma Ho-ling, the father of the Kuomintang standard-bearer, at a DPP campaign rally in Taichung Sunday.
Minister of Education Tu Cheng-sheng offered an apology yesterday morning on behalf of his chief of staff's slander against Ma's father.
Tu told the press at the education ministry he wished to apologize on behalf of his former chief of staff to the Ma family and people of Taiwan.
He said he accepted Chuang's resignation, which was tendered Sunday night.
"I offer an apology on behalf of Professor Chuang for the inappropriate remarks he made," Tu said. "What Chuang did," he added, "was strictly private in nature. He wasn't performing official duties of the Ministry of Education."
Moreover, Tu said, he "could not agree with" what his top aide said.
"And I regret that he said so," said Tu, who himself has often caused controversy with off-the-cuff remarks in the past three years.
His former chief secretary was not on Hsieh's campaign staff, nor is he a card-carrying DPP member. But he went to Taichung Sunday morning to take part in a "Give-a-high-five" campaign to symbolize Hsieh's come-from-behind victory over Ma Ying-jeou.
Demonstrators recognized Chuang and prompted him to speak for the DPP presidential candidate.
The elder Ma was also charged with having an affair with a married woman whom he accepted as a "gan nu-er" or "acknowledged daughter."
Then Chuang said Ma's father did "gan nu-er," which means "had sex with the daughter." "Gan" is a homophone for "do" which in this context means "to have sex."
He continued to call Ma a "little gutless man." "He might be a big gutless man now," the professor said.
As a matter of fact, Chuang called Ma names while he was masterminding the renaming of the Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall last December.
The Chiang Kai-shek memorial is now known as the Taiwan Democracy Memorial Hall.