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Fri, May 05, 2000 - Page 3 News List

KMT reform to include direct election for chairman position

By Hung Chen-Ling  /  STAFF REPORTER

After a series of "bottom up" consultation meetings around the country the KMT's Reform Committee (改造委員會) yesterday decided to hold a direct election for party chairman next year, preceded by the re-registration of party members.

At the same time, the Reform Committee devised a restriction against party office nominations as well as public service nominations by those who have violated criminal laws, in an effort to eliminate the party's "black gold (黑金)" image.

After a humbling defeat in the March 18 presidential election that ended 54 years of party rule over Taiwan, the KMT is now trying to force itself to undergo a top-to-bottom image change.

Despite the establishment of a new reform committee, however, pushing the KMT toward transformation has proven a slow task.

"I have heard from many grassroots groups and individuals who mistrust the KMT's sincerity to carry out reform. I hereby urge the party to act on reform as soon as possible," said Wang Yu-ting (王昱婷), a legislator and KMT reform committee member, at yesterday's meeting to discuss how to institute democratic practices within the party.

According to a proposal drawn up by Huang Te-fu (黃德福), many top-level positions in the KMT are to be directly elected by the membership, including the party chairman, Central Standing Committee (中常委) and the Central Advisory Committee (中評委).

Deputy head of the KMT's Department of Organizational Affairs, Lee Po-yuan (李伯元), indicated that the reform plans will be completed by the end of this year so that the party chairman will be directly elected by the full membership.

Deputy convener of the committee Liu Chao-shiuan (劉兆玄) said that decisions related to party reform will be left to the Central Standing Committee and will then serve as reform guidelines once they are approved at the party's provisional National Congress (臨時全代會), which is set to take place in mid-June.

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