A US district court of appeal has handed down a final ruling against the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association in San Francisco over the removal of a Republic of China (ROC) flag from its office in 2013.
The court on Monday ruled to maintain an earlier 2016 ruling, which ordered the association to put the ROC flag back in its office, the Overseas Community Affairs Council said in a press release yesterday.
The plaintiff, the Sue Hing Benevolent Association in San Francisco, called a news conference on Friday to declare victory in the legal battle, which has dragged on for six years, the council said.
“We express our gratitude to the Sue Hing Benevolent Association for its long-term effort to preserve the historical status of the ROC flag at the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association,” the council said, adding that it also thanked overseas compatriots for supporting the ROC.
In May 2013, members of the Chinese Consolidated Benevolent Association forced the passage of a resolution by a 21-20 vote to get rid of the flag at meeting of the board of directors.
It later announced on its Web site that it would instead display the US and People’s Republic of China flags, a move that was perceived to signify the end of its support for the ROC government.
In the 2016 ruling, the judge ruled that the resolution’s passage contravened the organization’s rules, because the resolution failed to gain the required number of votes from board members for its approval.
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