The Presidential Office yesterday said it has approved the resignations of National Security Council Secretary-General King Pu-tsung (金溥聰) and Presidential Office Secretary-General Timothy Yang (楊進添), despite President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) repeatedly calling for the two officials to remain in their posts.
King is to be succeeded by former minister of national defense Kao Hua-chu (高華柱) and Yang by former deputy legislative speaker Tseng Yung-chuan (曾永權). The new appointments are set to take effect on Thursday next week.
The Presidential Office said that Yang tendered his resignation several days ago on the grounds that his mission had been completed, and, after being asked to remain by the president, resubmitted his resignation citing the need to take care of his elderly mother.
Photo: Chen Chih-chu, Taipei Times
Yang’s second attempt to resign was approved, and, in accordance with precedent, he is to be hired as a senior adviser to the president, the Presidential Office said.
King resigned for “personal health and family reasons” and was also asked not to leave by the president several times, according to the Presidential Office.
King reportedly underwent a coronary artery stenting procedure in October last year.
Photo: Luo Pei-teh, Taipei Times
A source told CNA that King had another heart operation last week, and his family has insisted that he leave his post due to the workload and pressure.
According to a CNA report, King is not expected to work in the near future.
Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Huang Wei-cher (黃偉哲) said he was surprised about the resignations, adding that Kao taking over the national security council was incomprehensible, as he previously resigned from his post as minister of national defense due to health concerns.
Photo: Wang Min-wei, Taipei Times
“The changes to power brought about by the shuffle between King and Kao are not easily understood. We hope that the Presidential Office would disclose more information regarding the arrangement so that the nation can have a clearer idea of what is going on,” Huang said.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Lin Yu-fang (林郁方) said King’s resignation also took him by surprise: “I seriously don’t know why [he resigned]; maybe he has other plans for his life.”
Meanwhile, Charles Chen (陳以信), previously deputy commissioner of the KMT's Culture and Communication Committee, is to replace Yin Wei (殷偉) as one of the Presidential Office's spokespersons, with the other being Ma Wei-kuo (馬瑋國). Yin will serve as the president's secretary, in charge of the president's speechwriting team.
NPP WARNING: The NPP’s chairman said that a security law proposed by Beijing means it has renounced its promise to maintain ‘one country, two systems’ in HK The Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) yesterday proposed changing the law to provide protection for those seeking political asylum. China at the opening of the National People’s Congress in Beijing on Thursday introduced a draft security law for Hong Kong to ban treason, subversion and sedition, with a review expected next week. TPP caucus whip Jang Chyi-lu (張其祿) said that the party is concerned about democracy advocates in Hong Kong and has taken action to support them. The party has proposed an amendment to Article 18 of the Act Governing Relations with Hong Kong and Macau (香港澳門關係條例), which stipulates that the government can offer
The number of people from Hong Kong applying for residency in Taiwan last year rose 41 percent from a year earlier to 5,858, National Immigration Agency statistics showed. The statistics also showed that 600 applications were filed by Hong Kong residents in the first quarter of this year — three times the number filed in the same period last year — with applicants apparently not deterred by the COVID-19 pandemic. Just one day after it was reported that the Chinese government plans to enact new national security laws in Hong Kong, inquiries regarding immigration to Taiwan grew 10-fold, a Hong Kong-based immigration
‘BEGINNING OF THE END’: Democracy advocate Joshua Wong urged Hong Kongers to stand up and fight, and let the Chinese government know that they will not cave Hong Kong protesters yesterday battled with riot police in busy downtown areas, showing their opposition toward China’s dramatic move to crack down on dissent in the biggest demonstration since the coronavirus swept through the territory in January. Police deployed a water cannon and fired tear gas in the Causeway Bay shopping area after hundreds of protesters had gathered to oppose new national security legislation from China. Police warned the crowd they were taking part in an illegal gathering, and later said in a statement that “rioters threw umbrellas, water bottles and other objects at them.” At least 120 people were arrested,
‘TAIWAN IS SAFE’: As there have been no new local cases for 42 days, people should feel free to travel around the nation — as long as they follow disease prevention rules No new cases of COVID-19 were reported yesterday and only 20 of the people hospitalized after testing positive are still being treated in hospitals, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) said yesterday in Pingtung County’s Kenting (墾丁) as he promoted a “new disease prevention lifestyle” for the nation. As yesterday was the 42nd consecutive day with no new domestic cases, and experts consider 28 consecutive days with no domestic case — the span of two incubation periods — a sign that a community is relatively safe, Taiwan is safe, said Chen, who heads the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC),