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Talk of the day -- An anti-corruption agency

Talk of the day -- An anti-corruption agency

To proclaim the government's resolve to fight corruption, the Executive Yuan could announce the establishment of an anti-corruption agency under the Ministry of Justice as early as next week. Ranking government sources said President Ma Ying-jeou has listed the issue high on his agenda for the final two years of his current term, which ends in 2012.
The following are excerpts from the local United Daily News' coverage of the topic: According to a draft plan submitted by the Ministry of Justice to the Executive Yuan, members of the anti-corruption agency will comprise government ethics personnel and investigation agents. Ethics personnel will be stationed at agencies under the Executive Yuan, while investigation agents, who will act as judicial police, will be in charge of probing government corruption under the directive of prosecutors.
The agency will be similar to Hong Kong's "Independent Commission Against Corruption." Ma vowed to build a clean government when assuming office two years ago, and the news came after a recent spate of high-profile corruption cases involving police officers, prosecutors and judges.
Opinion polls conducted by the Justice Ministry found that 75 percent of respondents are in favor of opening such an agency and said it should be provided with a legal basis to operate independently without interference.
Ma and Premier Wu Den-yih have reached agreement to "get something done" to battle corruption during the remaining two years of Ma's term.
Presidential Office spokesman Lo Chih-chiang said Friday that the government is poised to make concrete moves to combat corruption, but would not provide details.
The recent string of corruption scandals have "unavoidably damaged the government's image," ranking government sources said. Led by State Public Prosecutor General Huang Shih-ming, the government has declared a "war on corruption," they said.
Meanwhile, the Executive Yuan is planning to scale up an anti- corruption meeting, with Premier Wu Den-yih attending to outline major directions for the campaign.
Clean governance is a key focus of Ma's administration, and the government cannot afford to tolerate any compromise in this regard amid high public expectations, the sources added.
A draft bill for establishing an anti-corruption agency has been stalled in the Legislative Yuan since 2006. The then-opposition Kuomintang (KMT) , which controlled the legislature, repeatedly blocked its passage on the grounds that opening an anti-corruption agency under the Executive Yuan is superfluous because of the existence of the Bureau of Investigation.
(By Flor Wang)




Updated : 2021-05-07 01:16 GMT+08:00