SMEAR CAMPAIGN: President Tsai Ing-wen thanked the LSE for making a statement and apologized for the ‘shameful’ political culture in Taiwan causing a disturbance
By Su Yung-yao and William Hetherington / Staff reporter, with staff writer
The London School of Economics （LSE） has received a large number of queries regarding President Tsai Ing-wen’s （蔡英文） doctorate and it can confirm that the degree was conferred, it said in a statement issued on Tuesday.
“Those with their eyes closed cannot see the truth, those with their ears closed cannot hear the truth,” Tsai said yesterday in response to allegations about the legitimacy of her dissertation.
The LSE’s statement should put an end to those who have tried to discredit her academic background or the school’s reputation, she said.
“We can be clear that the records of LSE and of the University of London — the degree-awarding body at the time — confirm that Dr Tsai was correctly awarded a PhD in Law in 1984,” the school’s statement said.
A copy of Tsai’s dissertation, titled “Unfair Trade Practices and Safeguard Actions,” was provided to the LSE library in paper form, and to the National Central Library in digital form by Tsai, it said.
“Friends in Taiwan, you can easily download the dissertation online from the National Central Library. There is no hindrance to reading the document whatsoever,” Tsai said.
Tsai had also authorized the LSE to provide a digital copy of her dissertation to researchers at the school, she said.
Tsai thanked the school for making a public statement confirming the authenticity of her dissertation and doctoral diploma.
She also apologized for the “shameful political culture in Taiwan, which caused so much disturbance” to the LSE.
Tsai called on supporters to help her repost the public statement from LSE on social media, to encourage an end to allegations that would be harmful to the school.
National Taiwan University professor emeritus Ho De-fen （賀德芬） on Aug. 29 accused Tsai of having forged her diploma and falsely stated that she obtained a doctorate from the LSE, leading to further speculation by former vice president Annette Lu （呂秀蓮） and some Chinese Nationalist Party （KMT） lawmakers on Sept. 20.
Tsai on Sept. 4 filed a defamation lawsuit against Ho and Hwan C. Lin （林環牆） a professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte’s Belk College of Business.
Ho had said that her allegations against Tsai were based on an investigation by Lin, but did not provide any details about the investigation or its findings.
“As president, Tsai must maintain social credibility,” the Presidential Office said at the time.
President Tsai Ing-wen, right, talks with US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Sandra Oudkirk, left, at the Presidential Office in Taipei yesterday. Photo: CNA