Sun, Dec 05, 2004 - Page 3 News List

With poll a week away, KMT holds rally in Changhua

ALLEGATIONS The KMT Chairman said the DPP was responsible for a downturn in the nation's economy and had been misusing public money

By Debby Wu  /  STAFF REPORTER

While the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) cancelled its rally yesterday morning because of Typhoon Nanmadol, the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) continued with its campaigning with a rally in Changhua County attended by about 10,000 people.

The KMT's rally, entitled "Taiwan will have a way out only if the people walk the right way," was attended by KMT Chairman Lien Chan (連戰), and vice chairmen Wang Jin-pyng (王金平), Chiang Pin-kung (江丙坤) and Vincent Shaw (蕭萬長), and KMT candidates from Yunlin County, Taichung City and County, Changhua County, and Nantou County.

Economic campaigning

The KMT, in seeking a majority in the legislature, again used economic factors to appeal to the public, accusing the DPP of impoverishing the country.

The DPP was also accused of stealing from the treasury.

"Taiwan's economy is becoming worse and worse as days go by: A child is burdened with a debt of NT$5 million from the day he is born, and people are saying this country is sick," Lien said.

"But the DPP is blaming it all on the opposition parties; it is saying that this is all because opposition parties prevented the government from doing its work, but we know this isn't the case," Lien said.

Lien pointed out that in the 5th legislature, the legislature has passed more bills and granted more budgets than when the KMT was in power.

"When I was the premier, there was one legislative term when the legislature only passed eight bills and it was the DPP in the opposition. Now we pass 86 bills in a term on average, and this is not the opposition's problem. This is about an ineffective and incapable government," Lien said.

"The so-called party-state phenomenon (黨國體制)" -- Lien said, referring to the usual terminology for the KMT's confusion of party and state assets during its 50 year rule -- "is the phenomenon whereby the DPP is using the nation's resources as its campaign resources.

Accusations of misuse

The DPP is also spending public money on its own campaign, instead of spending its own money," Lien said.

Lien did not mention in his speech the vast wealth that the KMT stole during its rule, which it has yet to return to the treasury.

He did, however, claim the NT$610.8 billion should be cut to half, and the saved money should be spent on public welfare, a measure which has been severely criticized in the US.

He further said that he hoped for peace and a win-win outcome in cross-strait relations, and that the national name of the ROC should not be changed although he absolutely opposed the "one country, two systems" formula.

Weapons procurement criticism

Wang also spoke on the topic of halving of the NT$610.8 billion special defense budget, and said that with the saved money, the country could go ahead establishing an all-volunteer military.

"If we can save NT$300 billion, we will propose a bill for the establishment of a volunteer military so that soldiering can become a profession, and in the future our children will only have to be trained for three months in the armed forces," Wang said.

Wang also said that the money saved could also be spent on several other much-needed social welfare items, including free education, lunches and textbooks for elementary-school students across the nation.

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