The Central Election Commission (CEC) made public the line-up of the 10 referendum debates yesterday, ending weeks of rumor and controversy.
The debates will start on Feb. 29 and run for three consecutive Sundays. There will be four debates on Feb. 29 and March 7, and two on March 14.
UFO Radio chairman Jaw Shaw-kong (趙少康) said that the line-up was "an act of God."
"We didn't know which Cabinet official we'll be facing in the debates until the CEC made the announcement today," Jaw said.
Kao Cheng-yen (高成炎), acting convener of the Green Party and leader of the Association of the 21st Century Agenda which will take part in two of the referendum debates, said that he was disappointed with the lawmaking body.
"I still cannot figure out why the Chinese Nationalist Party [KMT] and People First Party [PFP] bailed out of the events, while they're vehemently opposing the election-day referendum," he said.
Another debater worth noting was Ruan Ming (
Ruan was one of the five debaters earlier chosen by Premier Yu Shyi-kun to discuss the referendum's negotiation question last Monday.
Ruan will play the opposing side against Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Cho Jung-tai (
In the first referendum question about China's missile threat, Cabinet Spokesman Lin Chia-lung (林佳龍) will face off with independent Legislator May Chin (高金素梅); Deputy Secretary General to the President Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) will debate against Chan Chao-li (詹朝立), a poet and president of the Speech and Debate Association; Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) caucus whip Lo Chih-ming (羅志明) will speak against Yeh Yao-peng (葉耀鵬), a former DPP Control Yuan member; DPP Legislator Yu Ching (尤清) will face Kao; and DPP Legislator Julien Kuo (郭正亮) will face Jaw.
In the second question about cross-strait negotiations, Kaohsiung Mayor Frank Hsieh's (謝長廷) debate opponent is writer and political commentator Li Ao (李敖); Minister without Portfolio Yeh Jiunn-rong (葉俊榮) will debate against former DPP chairman Hsu Hsin-liang (許信良); DPP Legislator Chiu Tai-san (邱太三) comes up against Ding Ting-yu (丁庭宇), a sociology professor and president of the Gallup Market Research Corp, Taiwan; DPP Legislator Cho Jung-tai (卓榮泰) will oppose Ruan Ming; and Mainland Affairs Council Chairwoman Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) will talk against Independent Legislator Sisy Chen (陳文茜).
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