Wed, Jul 05, 2006 - Page 3 News List

KMT confirms it rejected application from PFP's Shen

By Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) yesterday confirmed it had rejected People First Party (PFP) Legislator Shen Chih-hwei's (沈智慧) application to join the KMT.

KMT Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said he would respect the decision made by the party's local branch in Taichung.

Shen announced last week that she had decided to leave the PFP and join the KMT for the next legislative session, which starts in September.

Shen, who ran for Taichung mayor against incumbent Jason Hu (胡志強) of the KMT last December, said her supporters wanted her to leave the PFP.

There was apparently a lot of resentment between the KMT and PFP branches in Taichung both before and after last December's election and the KMT's Taichung headquarters rejected Shen's application.

"Shen did come to me to talk about her application, but I told her that we needed to respect the local headquarters' decision," Ma said yesterday after presiding over a municipal meeting at Taipei City Hall.

The KMT requires applicants to file their membership applications with their local branches.

"If local branch has issues with an application, it's the applicant's job to communicate with the branch and try to solve the problems," he said.

Shen said on Monday that she would continue to try to join the KMT as an independent legislator.

PFP caucus whip Lu Hsueh-chang (呂學樟) said his party would not take her back.

"The KMT already rejected her application, but she still wants to join it ? What's done can't be undone. We give her our blessing and deepest regret as well," Lu said.

Shen's colleague, PFP Legislator Chen Chao-rung (陳朝容), fared better with his application to join the KMT. The application, which was filed two months ago, has been approved.

Starting from the next legislative election, a single-member district system will be implemented, which is regarded as unfavorable to smaller parties.

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