DPP rival calls on Taoyuan magistrate to step down
Central News Agency
2014-06-02 11:26 PM
Taipei, June 2 (CNA) The opposition party's candidate for Taoyuan County government head called on incumbent Magistrate Wu Chih-yang to step down Monday to take political responsibility for a public housing scandal that cost Wu his deputy and hurt his government's reputation. Cheng Wen-tsan of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) made his call after Wu fired Deputy Magistrate Yeh Shih-wen on Friday and removed four key county government officials earlier Monday in the aftermath of Yeh's detention on suspicion of taking bribes from a developer. "The affordable housing project was aimed at realizing social justice but it has been tainted now by a shocking bribery scandal. And Wu Chih-yang is simply trying to distance himself from a string of suspected senior officials. He should take political responsibility and resign," said Cheng, who will face the incumbent in the year-end local government elections. Yeh was kept in detention early Monday, along with Chairman Chao Teng-hsiung of Farglory Group who was suspected of giving Yeh a bribe of NT$16 million (US$532,450) to help Farglory win a tender for a project for building nearly 1,000 housing units in Bade Township of the county. In addition to issuing an apology, Magistrate Wu on Monday demoted or transferred department heads responsible for public works, land administration, urban and rural development as well as the county government's secretary general. He also recommended that the Justice Ministry make a change at the top of the county's ethics department. Although these five senior officials were being removed, there are no explanations of how a decision had been made to award the bidding to Farglory and there are no records of all relevant meetings by government officials, said the DPP contender. "Yes, there are people stepping down. Still, we do not have any truth," Cheng added. (By Chiu Chun-chin, Bien Chin-feng and S.C. Chang)
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