From the Worldwide Faith News archives

Audit Finds Irregularities in Management of Church-run Cemetery in

From "Char and David Alexander" <>
Date Fri, 22 Aug 2003 12:15:15 -0400

Taiwan Church News 2682 and 2683, July 21-27, 2003
Reported by Li Hsin-ren and Li Yi-ying, Translated and rewritten by David

   In 2002 the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan (PCT) established an audit
committee to evaluate church related social service and non-profit agencies.
On July 17th the committee made a preliminary report to the church's
committee (EXCO). It noted irrgularities in the conduct of business at Ping
(Peace) Cemetery in northern Taiwan.  Attorney Lin Yung-siong said that the
cemetery had deficiencies in construction bidding, property acquisition,
personnel affairs and investments.  The EXCO referred the report to its legal
sub-committee for report at the next EXCO meeting.
   After reports had been received and referred, and during discussions of
business matters later in the day, the Rev. Chen Yu-chuan took issue with the
audit committee.  Since he had served as convener for the cemetery's
construction committee during one of its projects, he had recused himself
voting on the audit committee's report.
   Moderator Wang Kwang-szu asked for suspension of the rules, and permitted
discussion of the committee report prior to the legal committee's review. 
Lin was asked to give further details to the entire EXCO.  He said that a
construction contract for 340 million Taiwan Yuan (8.5 million Euros, 10
million US$) was let with only two competing bids.  He also noted that Ping
general manager Li Shian-chuan had personally sold land to the cemetery
a time when land prices were particularly high.  He said both of these
looked suspicious.
   Rev. Chen made a point by point refutation of the charges, asserting that
"not one penny was taken, and no member of the cemetery's board had
   Mr. Huang Jau-hong, head of the EXCO's legal committee, pointed out that
the audit committee's report was not final, and was still open to
interpretation and clarification before being accepted as official.  So far
he could see, there were two main issues: 1) the conduct of the General
Manager and 2) all other matters. He said that as a professional, the general
manager should not have been involved in selling land to an agency he
The appearance of irregularity mandated a close examination by the audit and
legal committees to enable the EXCO as a whole to make informed decicisions.
   On July 27th the General Manager held an interview with a Taiwan Church
News reporter, gave a point by point explanation of every item included in
audit committee's report.  He, like Rev. Chen, asserted that no corrupt
practices had been involved in the management of the cemetery.

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