Mon, Oct 30, 2006 - Page 3 News List

Academic calls for urgent reform of the Constitution

STAFF WRITER , WITH CNA,SAN FRANCISCO

Taiwan must carry out constitutional reforms as soon as possible to adjust its system of government in order to enhance government efficiency, a Taiwanese academic said in the US on Friday.

Chen Ming-tong (陳明通), a professor at National Taiwan University's Graduate Institute of National Development, made the remarks while delivering a speech to the Silicon Valley chapter of the Global Alliance for Democracy and Peace.

According to Chen, the confusing system of government adopted by Taiwan is the biggest predicament faced by the country, and unless the system is changed through constitutional reform -- preferably by the end of next year, the new administration to be formed in 2008 will have difficulty functioning.

If the system of government was adjusted to become a purely parliamentary system or a presidential system, it will help resolve the current problem in which the implementation of government policies are constantly blocked by the opposition, with the delay of the arms procurement package from the US being the most obvious example, Chen said.

Chen claimed that judging from the performances of modern democratic countries in terms of their efficiency in governance and political cleanliness, those practicing the parliamentary system are better than those that have adopted the presidential system.

Indicating a personal preference for the parliamentary system, Chen said that if the Constitution was amended to change Taiwan's system of government to a parliamentary one, the majority party in the legislature would form the Cabinet to ensure smooth implementation of the Cabinet's policies.

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