The Legislative Yuan is to meet today to discuss a bill to deal with the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) ill-gotten assets, with New Power Party (NPP) legislators saying that they hope to see the bill passed by tomorrow.
The meeting is to follow up on Friday’s all-day discussions.
NPP lawmakers said at a committee review session that they had proposed their own version of the bill, but for the sake of consistency with regulations would fundamentally support the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) version, on the condition that it includes protections for whistle-blowers, compensation for victims and enticements for individuals to come forward with information.
The NPP also suggested renaming the bill to include organizations associated with a party within the proposed law’s scope.
NPP lawmakers said that as the KMT seems to be trying to delay the process by refusing to sign confirmation of the conclusions of any negotiations, the NPP caucus would not attend discussions of the bill should delays continue.
The NPP lawmakers said they received documents from the Internal Administration Committee regarding the negotiations, but as the documents were unsigned, they were unable to verify them.
Legislative Yuan Secretary-General Lin Chih-chia (林志嘉) later confirmed that the documents represented a “tacit understanding” and not an official agreement from the cross-party negotiations.
The NPP expressed disapproval of two of the clauses outlined in the documents, which would require all political parties to declare their assets within a year after the bill is promulgated.
They said the bill passed by the review committee should be submitted for final approval, adding that if any party motions to propose amendments, it should clearly explain its reasoning.
The NPP suggested that all political parties should discuss the general outline of the bill at a panel, with the DPP and the KMT each having five seats, while the NPP and the People First Party (PFP) would each have two seats.
In addition, NPP lawmakers said there should be another panel to discuss controversial clauses, with the DPP and KMT having three seats, and one seat each for the NPP and PFP.
Separately, former premier Yu Shyi-kun (游錫堃) said the NPP was entitled to disagree with the ruling party, of which he is a member.
“It is natural for different political parties to have differences, otherwise we should just merge,” Yu said.
SCHEDULE: The delegation is due to meet with President Tsai Ing-wen this morning and witness the signing of an MOU on bilateral health cooperation in the afternoon US Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) Alex Azar yesterday arrived in Taipei aboard a US government plane at the head of a delegation that is the highest-level visit by a US official since Washington switched diplomatic recognition to China in 1979. Azar’s flight landed at Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) at 4:48pm, nearly one hour earlier than scheduled, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said. The apron where it landed is reserved for military aircraft, the Songshan Air Force Base Command said. The members of Azar’s delegation included HHS Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response Robert Kadlec, HHS Chief of Staff Brian
CHINESE FIGHTERS: Beijing marked the US Cabinet member’s visit by briefly sending two warplanes across the median line of the Taiwan Strait yesterday morning President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday met with US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar in the highest-level official meeting between the two nations since 1979. “It is a true honor to be here to convey a message of strong support and friendship from [US] President [Donald] Trump to Taiwan,” Azar said during the open portion of his courtesy call to the Presidential Office, which was streamed live online before Tsai and Azar held a closed-door meeting. “Taiwan’s response to COVID-19 has been among the most successful in the world, and that is a tribute to the open, transparent,
‘CROSS-STRAIT CONSIDERATIONS’: Groups said that the Ministry of Education’s policies excluded Chinese and students should not be blocked over political issues The Taiwan International Student Movement yesterday said it would protest today outside the Ministry of Education in Taipei against a policy that excludes some Chinese students from returning to Taiwan amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Since June 17, the ministry has allowed foreign students from 19 “low risk” and “medium-low risk” countries and regions to enter Taiwan. On July 22, it announced that it was relaxing restrictions to include students from all countries and regions who are graduating this semester and on Wednesday it further expanded entry to students enrolled in degree programs. A letter sent by the ministry on Wednesday to universities did
PARTNERSHIP AND LEARNING: A Princeton University health policy researcher said that the nation would be a ‘treasure trove’ of information for the US health chief US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar on Friday said he wants to learn about Taiwan’s “incredibly effective” response to COVID-19, even though the nation did things that the US has fumbled, such as having a unified strategy and citizens willing to wear masks. Azar leads a US delegation arriving today for a three-day visit to Taiwan. They are to meet with President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and health system leaders, and Azar is to give a speech to public health graduates. “The message of this trip is about Taiwan,” Azar said in an interview, deflecting a question about China.