Thu, Oct 15, 2015 - Page 1 News List

KMT moves closer to replacing Hung

ONE LAST PUSH:Eric Chu said that the time has come for the party to make a painful, but necessary decision he felt responsible for, and apologized to Hung Hsiu-chu

By Stacy Hsu  /  Staff reporter

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Eric Chu, left, yesterday bows during the party’s weekly Central Standing Committee meeting in Taipei to apologize for moving to replace KMT presidential candidate Hung Hsiu-chu.

Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei Times

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Eric Chu (朱立倫) yesterday bowed twice in apology to Deputy Legislative Speaker Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱), as the party’s Central Standing Committee passed a proposal endorsed by a majority of committee members that calls for the rescission of Hung’s presidential nomination.

It is the second apology Chu has issued to Hung in a week over the KMT leadership’s decision to force her out of the presidential election scheduled for Jan. 16.

“My heart has been very heavy. I believe every KMT member present at the meeting or elsewhere also feels the same,” Chu said at an afternoon meeting of the committee in Taipei.

Bowing to a room packed with committee members and reporters, Chu said that the time has come for the party to make a painful, but necessary decision, for which he, as KMT chairman, must apologize to all members of the party.

Chu said he also needed to extend his most sincere apologies to Hung for all the frustration and trouble the party has caused her.

“This Saturday’s party congress is the time to save the KMT from collapse and ensure its survival,” Chu said. “It is definitely not the time to contest for power or pander for favors.”

Chu said he cannot sit back and let the KMT fade into history and head toward failure.

“Like Hung and every one of you, I love this party, I love Taiwan and I love the Republic of China. I shall aim to reunite and seek a consensus among all party members and our supporters,” Chu said, adding that the KMT’s enemies lie outside the party.

Following Saturday’s conference, the KMT would become a united party that jointly shoulders responsibility and endeavors to bring together Taiwanese with its cross-strait policies, shared values and beliefs, Chu said.

At yesterday’s meeting, the committee passed a motion proposing the annulment of Hung’s nomination, with the motion backed by 26 of its 39 members. The proposal is an effort to create a basis for the plan to put Hung’s candidacy to a vote at the upcoming party congress.

As the KMT will not accept any motions filed on the day of the congress due to the “special nature” of the convention, yesterday’s proposal is to be the only item on the meeting’s agenda.

The proposal states that while the KMT is indebted to Hung’s completion of her “current mission” and her dedication to the KMT, the party’s dismal election prospects have unnerved many of its grassroots members and legislative candidates.

“To address the severe challenges faced by the KMT in terms of its survival and future development, we propose nullifying the party’s nomination of Hung as its candidate for the upcoming 14th presidential election,” the motion said.

It goes on to acknowledge Hung’s efforts and hard work in the past few months, before urging for party solidarity to prop up the momentum of the KMT’s campaign.

The passage of the proposal came one week after the committee unanimously passed a motion to hold an extempore party congress with the stated aims of changing the presidential candidate and forging a party consensuses.

In response, Hung said in a press release yesterday that while she agrees with Chu’s remarks that the KMT’s enemies lie elsewhere and understands the party leadership’s anxiety over the upcoming presidential and legislative elections, there should be no confusion between right and wrong.

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