‘Villa 32’ seeks to be made an ex­am­ple of: Ko

The China Post - - LOCAL - BY CHI- HAO JAMES LO

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (

) yes­ter­day said that he has never ac­tively sought out cases of il­le­gal con­struc­tion ex­ten­sions to make ex­am­ples of; but rather, cases vol­un­tar­ily come to him.

Ko made the state­ment dur­ing a press con­fer­ence af­ter con­duct­ing a public in­spec­tion of the Taipei City Pump­ing Sta­tion Cen­tral Man­age­ment Cen­ter (

) and the Jian­guo Pump­ing Sta­tion ( ). The state­ment was made in re­sponse to me­dia ques­tions on the re­cent crit­i­cisms from real es­tate agents re­gard­ing Ko’s dec­la­ra­tion that all il­le­gal constructions within the city could not be bought or sold.

Ko had said that the rea­son why he had talked about the pol­icy was to erad­i­cate the prac­tices of build­ing il­le­gal constructions and il­le­gal im­prove­ment ex­ten­sions to ex­ist­ing build­ings.

Ko went on to use the re­cent “Villa 32” scan­dal as an ex­am­ple, stat­ing that the cul­ture of the na- tion en­ables those with con­nec­tions to pros­per in do­ing il­le­gal acts freely, while those with­out con­nec­tions are doomed to fail. The cul­ture is what gave birth to the im­mense amount of il­le­gal build­ing ex­ten­sions, Ko said, which has im­plored him to or­der the Taipei Con­struc­tion Man­age­ment Of­fice to seek ways to amend cur­rent reg­u­la­tions that fa­vor those with con­nec­tions.

Af­ter lo­cal press went on to ask the mayor whether he is us­ing Villa 32 as an ex­am­ple to oth­ers, Ko said that he never seeks out cases to make ex­am­ples of, but cases do vol­un­tar­ily come to him.

Con­struc­tion Man­age­ment

Of­fice Direc­tor Re­signs

Dur­ing Ko’s in­ter­view yes­ter­day, the mayor also said that the newly ap­pointed Taipei Con­struc­tion Man­age­ment Of­fice Direc­tor Kao Wen-ting ( ) has al­ready re­signed from the post hav­ing only served for a short pe­riod of time.

The mayor said that Kao had ap­plied for a trans­fer, and had left the post on Thurs­day evening. Kao had also spoke with Ko on Thurs­day, which prompted Ko to reeval­u­ate the pres­sure of be­ing a gov­ern­ment of­fi­cial, as well as how he could pro­vide of­fi­cials with the kind of en­vi­ron­ment to for­mu­late and ex­e­cute poli­cies safely.

New Il­le­gal Ex­ten­sions Dis­cov­ered in ‘Villa 32’

In re­lated news, dur­ing a search con­ducted on Thurs­day, the Taipei Con­struc­tion Man­age- ment Of­fice dis­cov­ered two more lo­ca­tions with il­le­gal con­struc­tion ex­ten­sions in “Villa 32.”

The of­fice’s Deputy Chief En­gi­neer Chiu Ying-che ( ) said that in to­tal, the villa con­tains five ar­eas with il­le­gal im­prove­ments.

Chiu said that the man­agers of the villa have been no­ti­fied to vol­un­tar­ily re­move the ex­ten­sions within 20 days, be­fore April. 28. If man­age­ment fails to com­ply, Chiu said, the Taipei City Gov­ern­ment will take it upon it­self to re­move the il­le­gal constructions.

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