Secretary-general steps down amid graft probe

By Ann Yu ,The China Post

Premier Sean Chen (陳冲) confirmed Lin Yi-shih’s (林益世) resignation yesterday at a ceremony marking Tax Day. Chen stated that Lin submitted his resignation yesterday morning after verbally offering his resignation the previous night. Chen said that Lin made the decision after serious discussions with him, adding that he accepted the resignation, and will respect his decision. President Ma Ying-jeou also said he respects the Executive Yuan’s decision, stating that previous reports of Ma demanding Lin to resign were false.

The resignation came after a series of bribery allegations were published by local media. Lin allegedly requested a bribe of NT$63 million from Kaohsiung-based Ti Yung Co.’s chief Chen Chi-hsiang. It was also claimed that he asked for a bribe of NT$83 million as part of a business deal with China Steel Corp. (CSC).

Lin immediately held two press conferences pronouncing his innocence and later filed lawsuits against Next magazine and businessman Chen for defamation.

Chen said in a statement following his resignation that he is sincerely sorry for causing inconvenience caused to the Cabinet by the incident. “My commitment to integrity has not once changed since becoming a politician. More time is needed as I am challenged to contest this political conspiracy. The resignation will act as a sign of defense for my innocence as I take more time to deal with judicial procedures.”

Ma’s Reaction Ma accepted Lin’s resignation with respect, while expressing appreciation for Lin’s previous government service, according to spokesperson Lee Chia-fei (李佳霏). Ma reiterated the importance of a transparent, uncorrupted government, emphasizing that there is absolutely no tolerance for any gray area, expressing that he will fully support the judicial procedures that are needed, said Lee.