Taipei--The China Youth Corps (???), a group established by former President Chiang Ching-kuo (???) in 1952, said Thursday that a public hearing to be held by a committee under the Executive Yuan on whether the group is affiliated to the opposition Kuomintang (KMT) Friday violates procedural justice.
Liu Chang-ping (???), a lawyer representing the group said it received a 33-page report from the Ill-gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee on Feb. 16, and was granted access to related information on Feb. 18. However, the committee gave it just three days to provide written answers.
This has never before happened in litigation procedures," Liu said.
He added that as several members of the committee have previously stated in writing or speeches that the Youth Corps is affiliated to the KMT, they are inherently biased.
In addition, the committee has asked the Ministry of the Interior and other government agencies for information, which those agencies have not yet provided.
If the committee insists on holding a public hearing tomorrow, it will not be in line with the stated purpose of shedding light on truth, he said.
Liu said his client's request that the committee postpone the public hearing has been ignored. In addition they have not been provided with an agenda for the meeting, nor a list of witnesses expected to appear.
Youth Corps spokesperson Chen Chia-hsiu (???) said that the group has long worked to help young people and criticized the confrontational approach of the committee.
She said Friday's public hearing will be a "David vs. Goliath" situation and one that has nothing to do with justice.
Chen noted that some volunteers plan to protest against the committee on Friday, adding that they remain determined to go ahead despite the Youth Corps urging them not to interfere with the hearing.
In response, committee spokesperson Shih Chin-fang (???) said the public hearing is only part of its probe, as the investigation is ongoing.
She said the committee welcomes the Youth Corps or the Kuomintang to submit evidence at Friday's public hearing.
Late last year the Youth Corps launched a signature drive and has received support from 73,000 people for a statement that detailed how for the past 64 years, the corps has worked to "serve youth and those young people have gone on to serve the country." It also claimed that the corps helps individuals irrespective of party affiliation and has never received funding from political parties.
The Ill-Gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee was set up in August 2016 based on the Statute on Handling the Inappropriate Assets of Political Parties and Their Affiliated Organizations. The statute was enacted by the DPP-dominated Legislative Yuan in July that same year.
Under the law, most of the KMT's properties have been frozen pending investigation by the committee. If the assets are determined to be "ill-gotten," they will be transferred to the state or returned to their rightful owners.
Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel