Sun, Jul 27, 2003 - Page 4 News List

Head of elections fires volly at chiefs

The Cabinet-level Central Election Commission (CEC) has been preparing to hold a referendum. CEC Chairman George Huang in a recent interview with `Taipei Times' reporter Monique Chu elaborated on the commission's role in the eventuality that it is called upon to coordinate a referendum. During the discussion, the veteran political figure, who is not affiliated with any party and has led the CEC since 1994, shared his views on Taiwan's electoral politics

By Monique Chu  /  STAFF REPORTER

In addition, government funding for elections such as campaign subsidies for candidates and political parties has been well received.

But what I really feel sorry about is an election culture that features vote-buying and violence in Taiwan. If we are unable to eradicate vote-buying and violence, we won't be able to pick the good and select the capable for public posts, since election participation by the capable and the moral will be rather limited to start with, despite a fair and just election system. It's a pity indeed.

If voters are affected by violence take election-related bribery from certain candidates, the quality of the elected will be less than ideal, thus affecting the rights of the people in a negative manner.

The government has to assert its determination to eradicate violence and bribery from elections, with the justice ministry and the police engaging in crackdowns when necessary. Without positive actions, the effect will be limited.

TT: What's your general observation of Taiwan's domestic politics over the past few decades?

Huang: Political figures should be unselfish, but in reality a majority of them are. Their selfishness has led to stark political confrontations we've witnessed today, a development endangering the interest of the people and the nation as a whole. Taiwan's politics has lapsed into what I call "factional politics" because various political parties place their own interests before those of the nation and the people.

The purpose of upholding a democracy is to safeguard the dignity of human beings, which involve mutual respect for individuals.

But while good at preaching about democracy and human rights, politicians simply run amok.

They are rather busy inventing slogans and denouncing each other, without being able to keep their promises. My ears have now malfunctioned because of the words that they've said over the years.

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