PFP asks for special committee to probe vote-buying scandal

The China Post staff

The People First Party (PFP) legislative caucus yesterday requested that a special investigation committee be formed to probe the alleged vote-buying surrounding the recent voting on Examination Yuan nominees. The allegations were made by former Interior Minister Chang Po-ya, whose nomination for Examination Yuan vice president was vetoed during legislative voting on June 21.

Chang claimed that she was approached by a number of lawmakers who attempted to “sell” their votes to her.

In addition, KMT lawmaker Lee Chia-chin alleged that the DPP had attempted to buy votes for Chang at the price of NT$10 million per vote.

Referring to President Chen’s remarks that “every vote for the nominees was clean,” PFP convener Shen Chih-hwei urged the president to refrain from commenting on the situation in order not to intervene with investigations by judiciary authorities.

President Chen had said that a wise man would not believe “rumors.” Did he mean that he is the wise man and the public is the fool, Shen questioned. The “pro-green” camp, the ruling DPP and TSU, reacted by objecting to the PFP’s proposal, saying that public prosecutors and investigators are already probing the vote-buying case.

Ko Chien-ming, DPP legislative caucus convener, noted that if the Legislature were to look into every single case, then a special investigation committee should be formed to probe KMT and PFP lawmakers making trips to mainland China. DPP lawmaker Yu Ching, who was under attack for allegedly providing an NT$150 million cashier’s check for vote-buying purposes, urged Chang to fully cooperate with prosecutors to prove his innocence.

The prosecution will interview Chang and Lee as “witnesses” on the vote-buying and vote-selling charges. However, Lee did not show up for an interview yesterday morning, citing the presence of the media. In related news, PFP caucus secretary-general Liu Wen-hsiung threatened to boycott all negotiation sessions if the “pro-green” TSU failed to apologize to the PFP and the KMT for its accusation that Chang had agreed to point finger at the “pro-green” camp in exchange for the PFP and KMT’s support in the Kaohsiung mayoral election. The TSU refused to apologize for saying that Chang was connected to the pro-blue camp, unless the PFP could prove that it never contacted Chang regarding her candidacy in the Kaohsiung mayoral election.