TAIPEI - The Ministry of National Defence (MND) said yesterday that the son of the vice president did not receive preferential treatment.
The Chinese-language Apple Daily said yesterday that Wu Tzu-chun (吳子均), the youngest son of Vice President Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) is currently serving his compulsory military service under the Military Police Command.
The report quoted unidentified fellow conscripts of Wu Tzu-chun as accusing Wu of receiving special treatment from the military in his assignment to the Military Police Command.
Fellow conscripts told the newspaper that Wu complained repeatedly about a knee problem during his two-month-long basic training since his enlistment this September. These conscripts cast doubt on whether Wu could be chosen to serve in the Military Police Command, which requires a higher physical standard than that of the other military branches, the report said.
Asked to comment, military spokesman Luo Shou-he (羅邵和) confirmed yesterday that Wu did have knee problems but the situation was not serious enough to prevent him from serving in the military.
Wu has passed his required physical examination to serve in the military, Luo said, adding that Wu told the military that he will not file for an earlier discharge due to his knee problem and will continue to serve in the military.
According to the military, Wu has met all required standards, including height, eyesight, and other physical standards to be qualified to serve in the military police, and received no special treatment.
The military said Wu has been undergoing training at the Military Police School since Oct. 30 to gain qualification as a member of the military police, and has received the same training as every other conscript.
The Military Police Command yesterday also said it treats every conscript equally and Wu did not receive special treatment simply because he is the vice president's son.
Son Prepares to Begin Military Service: Hsia
In related news, Taiwan's top envoy to Indonesia Andrew Hsia (夏立言), who was tapped to be the nation's new deputy defence minister, told local media Saturday that his son is currently making preparations to come back to Taiwan to serve his compulsory military service.
Hsia was under fire from lawmakers because his 32-year-old son has yet to perform his required military service. Local media accused Hsia's son of deliberately dodging military service.
Asked to comment, Hsia told the Central News Agency on Saturday that he feels regret that his son has not performed his duty as an R.O.C. male. But he stressed that his son did not intentionally dodge military service.
His son is "actively making preparations" to return to Taiwan to serve his compulsory military service, Hsia said.