Tue, Sep 20, 2005 - Page 3 News List

DPP city councilors plan to boycott Ma's Taipei report

BY JEWEL HUANG  /  STAFF REPORTER

To highlight Premier Frank Hsieh's (謝長廷) difficulties in the legislature because of a boycott by pan-blue lawmakers, the Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) Taipei City councilors yesterday decided to take similar measures to "educate" Taipei City Mayor Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) when he gives a municipal report today.

"We will not follow the KMT's irrational steps to block Ma from giving his municipal report. We will take more moderate measures to protest Ma's inability to lead the city government," DPP Secretary-General Lee Yi-yang (李逸洋) said yesterday after discussions with the DPP's caucus leader Councilor Chen Cheng-teh (陳正德).

Chen said that DPP's city councilors will not boycott Ma in the same unbridled fashion that pan-blue lawmakers have used in the legislature, but promised some action, such as long speeches or protests with placards.

"We will not take our protest too far and will not overdo it," Chen said.

"The DPP will not force the city council into idleness and our aim is to educate Ma on how to be a competent party leader," Lee said.

Ma is also chairman of the KMT.

Ma is scheduled to give a municipal report on "how to build Taipei into a healthy city" at the city council this morning.

DPP city councilors earlier in the day said they planned to mimic the pan-blue camp legislators by boycotting Ma's report and stopping him from standing at the podium's platform, but later in the afternoon softened their attitude and said they would make some moderate objections to highlight the absurdity of the KMT legislative caucus' actions.

"I will ask Ma to make his capacity clear -- whether he is Chairman Ma or Mayor Ma -- and how much attention he has paid to the city government since he was elected KMT chairman," DPP Councilor Lan Shih-tsung (藍世聰) said yesterday.

In reaction to the DPP city councilors' threats, Ma said he would face a question-and-answer session with a moderate attitude.

"It is not my first time giving a report in the city council and it is not the first time for the opposition party to boycott, either," Ma said. "The city council is obligated to supervise the city government, while I hope city councilors will also applaud us if we do a good job. Reasonable supervision is needed in the city council."

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