Sun, Oct 31, 1999 - Page 1 News List

KMT confirms former Assembly Speaker must go

KMT DECISION With an eye on the presidential election and public opinion, the KMT at last has been forced to push out the wayward Su Nan-cheng

By Lauren Chen  /  STAFF REPORTER

Former National Assembly Speaker Su Nan-cheng (蘇南成) will be expelled from the party and unseated as an assembly member, it was confirmed at a KMT meeting yesterday.

The KMT's Evaluation and Discipline Committee unanimously approved the expulsion of Su and immediately sent an official letter to the Central Election Committee (CEC).

Officials at the CEC confirmed they had received the letter requesting Su's expulsion from the National Assembly.

"At the earliest we could convene a special meeting tomorrow, or perhaps within two or three days time, to complete all the necessary paper work,'' said Chen Hsueh-hui (陳雪慧), secretary-general of the CEC.

Su was expelled following the passing of a series of measures in September that amended the Constitution, by extending the term of assembly members by more than two years and replacing future elections with a system of proportional representation.

Su was accused of contravening the party line by allowing assembly deputies to vote for a second time during the second reading of the controversial term-extension amendment, after the motion had failed to pass the first time.

Though the KMT and DPP headquarters strongly opposed the term extensions, deputies of both parties came out in support of the move in the early hours of Sept. 4.

The KMT's Central Standing Committee, the party's highest decision-making body, approved Su's expulsion from the party on Sept. 8.

But legal protection measures in the party constitution allow disciplined members to file an appeal within 30 days, after receiving notice of punishment against them.

Su did appeal to the party's discipline committee with a 20,000 character report on Oct. 19.

But it was not until Oct. 27, when media reports revealed no action had been taken, that there was fierce criticism of the KMT in the press.

As a result KMT headquarters was forced to accelerate the expulsion process by announcing it would convene a provisional disciplinary meeting.

Chien Wei-chang (簡維章), chairman of the disciplinary committee, said Su's lengthy appeal repeatedly emphasized three points and pointed an accusing finger at others in the party.

"Su tried to shift the blame to party headquarters for its obscure stance on constitutional reform, and to the assembly's caucus leader for lacking strong leadership, while reiterating that what he did was appropriate in his role as Assembly Speaker,'' Chien said.

Chien, however, dismissed Su's words as empty, saying, "It was as clear as crystal, that everyone from President Lee Teng-hui (李登輝), to the party chairman, from the vice president and chairman Lien Chan (連戰) to Secretary-General John Chang (章孝嚴), they all objected to the term-extension amendment.''

Among the participating disciplinary members, Chien said, no-one defended Su's behavior.

On the contrary, several blasted his lack of self-criticism in the appeal. Barring unforeseen circumstances, the party's Central Standing Committee will approve the expulsion order next Wednesday.

It will be the second time Su has been kicked out of the party, having been first expelled for violating a party resolution and running for Tainan City Mayor in 1972, an election he won.

After winning a re-election in 1982 Su was allowed to return into the KMT fold.

While all KMT heavyweights called for the dismissal of Su's party membership, opposition members, including the DPP's Assembly caucus leader, crossed party lines to back up Su.

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