Wed, Jan 12, 2005 - Page 3 News List

Lu talks about recent controversies, warns about hasty alliances

By Jewel Huang  /  STAFF REPORTER

In light of the nation's recent election controversies, Vice President Annette Lu said yesterday that the comprehensive vote recount conducted after the presidential elections last year offered a good opportunity for the country to re-examine its electoral system and voting process.

"The whole trial process uncovered many imperfections in our electoral system and polling procedures," Lu said. "I think we could take advantage of this lawsuit to act as a `health checkup' for the election system, and I believe we can prevent similar disputes from happening again."

Lu also suggested that the government could consider studying new schemes of voting methods, since the current voting method was somewhat outdated.

In Taiwan, voters select the candidates they prefer by stamping a circle on a paper ballot.

"Taiwan could refer to the US, which has begun to use an electronic voting system -- since Taiwan has strong capabilities in technology," Lu said.

Lu suggested that the Central Election Committee could figure out other means of holding a poll, and mentioned that Gambia -- one of Taiwan's diplomatic allies -- uses marbles to vote. She noted that Taiwan gave about 1.5 million marbles to Gambia as a gift in an effort to further its democratization when she last visited the country.

Meanwhile, in response to recent reports about the Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) political cooperation with the People First Party (PFP), Lu said that inter-party alliances could not be entered into too rashly, since the confrontation between the rivals before the legislative elections was quite intense.

"It would be unnatural to facilitate cooperation between the DPP and the PFP such a short time after the elections. I'm afraid values could be confused under such circumstances," Lu said.

Kaohsiung Mayor Frank Hsieh (謝長廷) said that whether the two parties should sign a memorandum on political cooperation depends on the sincerity and trust of both sides.

"In Japan, political parties would sign a so-called memorandum if they reached an agreement on political cooperation. If mutual trust is enough, I think a memorandum can be ruled out," Hsieh said.

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