Thu, Sep 14, 2006 - Page 2 News List

Appointment of TV network manager creates controversy

By Angelica Oung  /  STAFF REPORTER

A meeting held yesterday to discuss the strategic direction of the Aboriginal TV Network was dominated by the controversial selection of a non-Aboriginal to head the network.

Yu Kan-ping (虞戡平) was selected by the Public Service Television board before the meeting to lead the network for a three-year term.

Although Yu has extensive experience working with the Amis tribe, he is of Han descent.

There have been strong dissenting voices within the Aboriginal community over Yu's appointment to the top job.

"I myself felt that there should have been an Aboriginal station manager," said Public Television board member and adjunct professor of Taiwanese Literature at National Chengchi University Sun Da-chuan (孫大川) at the meeting yesterday.

But he defended the choice, saying that of the nine shortlisted candidates Yu was the only one with the technical expertise necessary for the job.

"We will work to ameliorate the lack of technical expertise [within the Aboriginal community]. Within the next three years we will cultivate talent in a systematic way," he added.

Wang Jun-show (王俊秀), Professor of Sociology at Tsinghua University, called for the Aboriginal community to look beyond blood ties when it comes to their candidate selection criteria.

Drawing on his experience as president of the Hakka-dominated National United University, Wang said it was possible for an outsider to effectively promote a culture that is not his or her own.

"Even though I'm not Hakka, I became more Hakka than the Hakka. They called me a spiritual Hakka," Wang said.

The dissenting voice on the panel belonged to Oebay A Awi, of the Saisiat tribe.

Saying that "we were only allowed to join the discussion after the decision was made," he called for the station manager position to be "returned to the Aborigines."

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