Mon, Sep 19, 2005 - Page 3 News List

Gridlock in the legislature set to continue

LOGJAM The pan-blue camp is willing to let the premier make his report, but only if the DPP first agrees to its proposal to establish five commissions of investigation


The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) announced yesterday that the pan-blue alliance would stop boycotting Premier Frank Hsieh's (謝長廷) report in the legislature as soon as the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) agrees to sign the agreement for establishing five commissions of inquiry, one of which concerns the Kaohsiung mass rapid transit (MRT) system problems.

"The ball is in the DPP's court now," said Tseng Yung-chuan (曾永權), executive director of the KMT's Central Policy Committee.

Tseng said that they hope that the DPP would now take steps towards easing the deadlock between itself and the opposition parties.

According to Tseng, the KMT has already established a fourteen person decision-making commit-tee, and meetings would be held starting today to discuss strategies to be used against the DPP at the Executive Yuan and Legislative Yuan meetings this week.

The KMT and DPP are also meeting today to discuss the details of Premier Hsieh's report.

Tseng said that all the pan-blue alliance was requesting was the five commissions of inquiry, but the DPP had proposed three other additional commissions, including a commission on corruption, a commission on the investigation of unused property and a commission on pollution, indicating that they were not sincere in wanting to resolve the problems between the two parties.

The pan-blue camp proposed the establishment of the five commissions because they lack executive power as the opposition, but the governing party can hold investigations and inquiries at any time it wishes, Tseng said.

Tseng said that the KMT was willing to apologize to Hsieh and hoped that the DPP would respond sincerely.

People First Party (PFP) caucus whip Sun Ta-chien (孫大千) said yesterday that the PFP was still against the review of the arms procurement bill and will oppose the proposed arms purchase to the end.

DPP Legislator Tang Huo-shen (湯火聖) countered this by mentioning that in a talk with President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) recently, Chen had mentioned that the arms procurement bill was already drafted and being planned during the KMT's rule.

Tang continued that although the PFP has the right to scrutinize the bill, it cannot keep blocking it just for the sake of opposing the governing party. The bill should at least have the chance to be reviewed by the legislature's National Defense Committee, he said.

According to Sun, the PFP is not against the arms purchase, but against what it deems a waste of money. The PFP will keep opposing the bill regardless of what President Chen had said, he said.

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