Meanwhile, DPP Legislator Pan Men-an (潘孟安) said the DPP caucus was opposed to an executive order lifting the ban “because executive orders are not above the law.”
“If they are, the existence of the Legislative Yuan would be meaningless,” he added.
Beta agonists are still listed as illicit drugs under the Veterinary Drugs Control Act (動物用藥品管理法) so it is hard to figure out why one of them, ractopamine, would be allowed in human food, Pan said.
Pan said the KMT caucus and the Executive Yuan are both trying to evade responsibility for the decision to ease the ban.
DPP Legislator Huang Wei-cher (黃偉哲) said Ma’s insistence on having the issue resolved by today was “very suspicious” because the UN Codex Alimentarius Commission, which develops international standards for food, was scheduled to discuss the maximum residue levels for ractopamine in its July 2 meeting.
“Ma could wait until the results [of that meeting] before making a final decision, that would be more persuasive to Taiwanese,” Huang said.
The legislature was idled for a fourth straight day yesterday by the DPP’s protest, but the atmosphere in the chamber was relaxed for the DPP lawmakers occupying and guarding the podium after the KMT caucus decided against an “invasion.”
In response to KMT criticism that the DPP had squandered millions of taxpayer’s dollars with its boycott as well as the KMT caucus’ NT$2 million donation of their salaries for this week as a disaster relief fund, Pan said the DPP lawmakers had been in the assembly room waiting for the beginning of the plenary session and the vote.
“Those who were not in the room were KMT legislators, not us,” he said.
The Taiwan Solidarity Union said its three lawmakers would support the DPP’s boycott to the very last minute and that it was opposed to resolving the beef issued through and executive order as well.