More voters on poll roles
There are 16,559,254 eligible voters for Saturday's elec-tions, an increase of 736,671 over the previous legislative elections, the Central Elec-tion Commission said yesterday. Of the total, 16,258,979 voters are eligible to vote for candidates running for regional seats, while 300,275 voters are eligible to vote for candi-dates running for Aboriginal seats. There are 386 candi-dates competing for 168 regional seats and 18 candi-dates running for eight Aboriginal seats. There are also eight overseas Chinese seats and 41 at-large seats
to be filled based on a pro-portional representative system. A total of 13,930 polling stations will be open nationwide, officials said. The constituencies with more than 1 million eligible voters are Taoyuan County (1.26 million), Taichung County (1.06 million) and the first constituency in Taipei City (1.003 million).
Military status normal
The military will maintain a normal alert level for Satur-day's legislative elections, military spokesman navy Captain Liu Chih-chien (劉志堅) said yesterday. Speaking at a regular news conference at the Ministry
of National Defense, Liu
said that under the present combat alert system, only a normal alert level is required for legislative elections
day, with only a certain percentage of troops staying in military barracks. With
the consent of the comman-ding officers, Liu said, those troops can also temporarily leave the barracks to cast their ballots. In comparison, Liu said, the presidential election day is subject to a heightened alert. The main difference between the
two levels of alert lies in
the rank of the commanding officers required to stay in the barracks. At the normal alert level, Liu said, a relatively high-ranking commanding officer is required to stay in the barracks. When the military is on heightened alert, he said, all levels of comman-ding officers and the chief political warfare officers must stay.
Higher wage pushed
Some 20 students petitioned the Council of Labor Affairs yesterday for a higher min-imum wage. The students consider the minimum wage of NT$66 per hour too low. According to the students, due to high tuition and living costs, many students take up part-time jobs. But the minimum wage does not cover their basic needs.
The newly adjusted require-ment for work hours, which was passed in 2001, is 84
per fortnight. But the mini-mum wage is still calculated based on the old work hours of 48 per week. The students suggested the new work hour adjustment to be taken into consideration for a
new minimum wage figure. In response, the council said public hearings regarding students' part time jobs would be held.
Malaysian group arriving
A group of young Chinese-Malays left Malaysia yes-terday for Taiwan where they will engage in cultural exchanges. The 340 Malay-sians will visit various places around the country during their 21-day visit. Several Malaysia officials and Tai-wanese representatives spoke at the farewell cere-mony and a special flag was also given to the group. Among the officials who attended the ceremony were Lee Tsung-fen (李宗芬), Lin Wei-teh (林渭德) and Chung Wen-chang (鍾文昌) from the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Malaysia, as well as Malaysia's Youth and Sports Vice Minister Ong Tee Keat (翁詩傑).