Taipei Deputy Mayor Pai Hsiou-hsiung (白秀雄) yesterday said that it is up to prosecutors to determine whether the former superintendent of Taipei Municipal Hoping Hospital and the head of its Infectious Diseases Department should receive administrative punishments from the city government over the SARS outbreak at the hospital. \n"Prosecutors have control over the investigation now," Pai said. "If we need evidence or records from our own investigation, we will have to `borrow' it from them. So we have to work with them through the process." \nHe made the remarks when asked by reporters when the city government would announce if former superintendent Wu Kang-wen (吳康文) and department head Lin Jung-ti (林榮第) would face punishment. \nThe city's Bureau of Health announced on Thursday that it had suspended Dr. Chou Ching-kai (周經凱) from practicing medicine for three months because he broke the mandatory quarantine imposed on Hoping Hospital staff and that it had revoked the physician certificate of Jen Chi Hospital's superintendent Dr. Liao Cheng-hsiung (廖正雄) for concealing the SARS outbreak at his facility. \nDuring the Thursday evening press conference, however, bureau officials said Wu and Lin were still under investigation. \nPai said that, during interviews with bureau officials, Wu and Lin tried to avoid taking responsibility for the outbreak of SARS at their hospital. As a result, he said, the bureau needed more documents from the hospital before a decision could be made about the pair. \nThe bureau, however, has been told it must get permission from the Taipei District Prosecutors' Office to look at the hospital's records, he said. \n"When we tried to access patients' records, the hospital's employee-log records and so on, Taipei Chief Prosecutor Chen Ta-wei (陳大偉) told us we couldn't do so without prosecutors' authorization because these items are now crucial evidence in their investigation," Pai said. "When they [the prosecutors] decide who should bear the responsibility [for the outbreak], we'll know who to blame as well."
The Hualien District Prosecutors’ Office has listed six people as suspects in a judicial investigation into a fatal train crash on Friday last week. Fifty people were killed and more than 200 were injured when the Taroko Express No. 408 train slammed into a crane truck that had slid onto the tracks near the entrance of Cingshuei Tunnel (清水隧道) in Hualien’s Sioulin Township (秀林). The office also summoned six officials at the Taiwan Railways Administration’s (TRA) Hualien Engineering Section for questioning about alleged illegal business operations and unsafe work conditions by Yi Hsiang Industry Co and Tung Hsin Construction Co, the two
The navy’s new 10,600-tonne warship is on Tuesday to be christened the ROCN Yushan (玉山), as the nation’s indigenous shipbuilding program reaches a milestone, sources said yesterday. The vessel, previously referred to as the “new landing platform dock,” was at a shipyard with its name freshly painted on the hull with the number 1401, the Liberty Times (the sister paper of the Taipei Times) reported yesterday, citing an unnamed observer. Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Wang Ting-yu (王定宇), a member of the legislature’s National Defense and Foreign Affairs Committee, confirmed the report in a Facebook post. The NT$4.635 billion (US$163 million) ship is designed
DIALOGUE SOUGHT: Washington said it was concerned about the pattern of ongoing attempts to intimidate Taiwan after the 10th day of PLA activity in the region The US on Monday urged Beijing to stop its multifaceted pressure campaign against Taiwan after China sent 25 military jets into Taiwan’s air defense identification zone. “The United States notes with concern the pattern of ongoing PRC [People’s Republic of China] attempts to intimidate the region, including Taiwan,” a US Department of State spokesperson said in an e-mail response to questions. “We urge Beijing to cease its military, diplomatic and economic pressure against Taiwan, and instead engage in meaningful dialogue with Taiwan.” The Ministry of National Defense said that 25 Chinese military aircraft entered the zone on Monday. It was the 10th straight
‘NOT ENTHUSIASTIC’: People who have been approved by the CECC as special cases who need to travel, such as foreign diplomats, would be able to receive a vaccine The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday expanded the eligibility for COVID-19 vaccination to the fourth priority group — people who need to travel abroad for special reasons — adding that out-of-pocket vaccines would be available from Wednesday next week. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said although Taiwan’s COVID-19 vaccination program was on Monday expanded to include the top three groups in the priority list, people are still “not enthusiastic” about getting vaccinated. “Only 1,220 people received a vaccine shot on Tuesday, and a total of 27,113 people have received COVID-19 vaccination” so far, he