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Legislature forms task force to investigate egg import scheme

07/11/2024 05:51 PM
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DPP Legislator Chen Ting-fei (right) and KMT lawmaker Yang Chiung-ying (second left). CNA photo July 11, 2024
DPP Legislator Chen Ting-fei (right) and KMT lawmaker Yang Chiung-ying (second left). CNA photo July 11, 2024

Taipei, July 11 (CNA) The Legislative Yuan's Economics Committee on Thursday approved the establishment of a task force to investigate the government's handling of an egg import scheme from 2022-2023, which opposition lawmakers characterized as being marred by controversy.

A proposal to set up the task force was passed unanimously through a vote by lawmakers from the opposition Kuomintang and Taiwan People's Party, after ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) legislators walked out of the committee meeting in protest.

The Economics Committee is currently made up of 14 members, including KMT Legislator Yang Chiung-ying (楊瓊瓔) and DPP lawmaker Chiu Yi-ying (邱議瑩), who are both convenors of the committee.

According to Yang, TPP lawmaker Chang Chi-kai (張啓楷) will head the task force, which was officially inaugurated Thursday and is scheduled to remain operational until Dec. 31, 2024.

KMT lawmakers hold placards calling for transparency and questioning the DPP's opposition against the investigation during Thursday's legislative committee meeting in Taipei. CNA photo July 11, 2024
KMT lawmakers hold placards calling for transparency and questioning the DPP's opposition against the investigation during Thursday's legislative committee meeting in Taipei. CNA photo July 11, 2024

A task force meeting must be attended by at least one third of its members to go ahead, while resolutions must be approved by more than half of the attendees, Yang said, adding that the newly established team will focus on the Ministry of Agriculture and other relevant government agencies, during which public officials could be summoned to attend hearings at the Legislature.

On Thursday, DPP lawmakers criticized the formation of the task force, arguing that not only it is unconstitutional but also in violation of the Law Governing the Legislative Yuan's Power, amendments of which were recently passed by a vote of the full Legislature.

In accordance with Article 46-2 of the amended bill, the Legislative Yuan shall not exercise its powers during an ongoing investigation or trial proceeding before a judgement is finalized, DPP Legislator Chen Ting-fei (陳亭妃) said.

Currently, both prosecutors and the Control Yuan are conducting investigations into the egg scheme, which means the Legislature forming a task force targeting the matter is clearly a violation of the law, Chen added.

DPP lawmaker Chiu Yi-ying. CNA photo July 11, 2024
DPP lawmaker Chiu Yi-ying. CNA photo July 11, 2024

Her remarks were echoed by Chiu, who urged the KMT and TPP to reconsider their decision.

In response, Chang said there is a need to establish a task force at the Legislature in the wake of suspicions about government-corporate collusion in the egg import scheme, adding the public has the right to demand the truth.

(By Kuo Chien-shen and Ko Lin)

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