Fri, Sep 23, 2005 - Page 3 News List

DPP plans to use greater vigor in defending itself

BY JEWEL HUANG  /  STAFF REPORTER

Following in the steps of the Cabinet and its legislative caucus, the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) will also strengthen its mechanism of spokespersonship by adding two Taipei City councilors to join in a "spokesperson's group," in an effort to target the mistakes that Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) makes as he governs Taipei City.

Because of the contrast between the opposition parties' vigorous criticism and the government's weak and belated counterattacks, DPP Spokesman Cheng Wen-tsan (鄭文燦) yesterday said that the DPP decided to improve the party's position and do its best to defend the DPP and the government, since the year-end elections are looming.

"Some false accusations that the pan-blue camp has made, and stories or campaign ads without fact-checking might harm our candidates, which makes us worry a lot," Cheng said. "Especially when the pan-blue camp has just started its negative campaign strategy, trying to blacken the government's image with nonsensical remarks."

Several high-ranking DPP officials have conveyed concerns about this phenomenon and have complained about the slow reaction of the Executive Yuan to the pan-blue camp's charges, saying it leaves a bad impression with voters about the government's capabilities.

Thus, the DPP decided to beef up its spokesperson mechanism. In addition to the regular spokesmen, DPP Secretary-General Lee Yi-yang (李逸洋), Deputy Secretary-General Yen Wan-ching (顏萬進) and Cheng -- who usually reacts to national issues or the pan-blue camp's criticisms -- DPP Taipei City councilors Hsu Chia-ching (徐佳青) and Lan Shih-tsung (藍世聰) will join the spokesperson's group to target municipal omissions or scandals exposed in Ma's administration.

"Ma has neglected his mayoral duties for a long time, and we think citizens and other people can't neglect this fact," Lan said. "We have the responsibility to let them know."

Hsu is also the director of the party's Department of Woman's Development and Lan is the director of the DPP's Department of Social Development.

Additionally, in order to prevent the government's major construction projects and reforms from being distorted and incorrectly relayed to the public, Cheng said the DPP's central standing committee will also enhance the contacts that exist with the Presidential Office, the Executive Yuan and the DPP, and each department will be required to respond immediately to controversies.

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