Abilympics team win medals
A Taiwanese delegation comprised of 19 physically challenged competitors won four gold medals, four silver and one bronze at the Seventh International Abilympics, a vocational skills competition that ended yesterday in Shizuoka, Japan. A total of 401 competitors from 29 countries participated in the contest that took place from Nov. 13 through yesterday under the auspices of the International Abilympic Federation in Japan. Another Taiwanese team, made up of 44 competitors, is taking part in the 39th International Skill Competition, which opened on Nov. 15 in Shizuoka and runs through Wednesday.
City defends ID card policy
The Taipei City Government yesterday defended its policy of using digital student identification cards at all levels of school in the city as a way to keep abreast of e-administration trends. Wu Ching-chi (吳清基), director of the city's Education Department, made the remarks a day after a local high school called for the repeal of the policy for the sake of privacy. Several students at Tatung High School launched a signature drive on Saturday during the school's anniversary celebrations urging the city government to back down in order to protect students' human rights. Principal Lee Ching-tzung (李慶宗) said the school had encouraged students to swipe their new ID cards while entering or exiting school, but that no punishment had been imposed for those not yet doing so.
Lu to attend court hearing
Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) said yesterday that she was calm about today's hearing on charges of graft at the Taipei District Court and that she hopes to have an opportunity to clarify the issue of special allowances for government heads for the court. Lu, along with her secretary and four other members of staff, are due to visit court to explain allegations they pocketed NT$5.6 million (US$175,000) by making fraudulent reimbursement claims. Lu said the special allowance fund for government heads is a "historical glitch" that has been plaguing local chiefs for over a decade and she wants to take the chance to explain the issue to the judges. Lu's trial will begin at 9:30am this morning.
Pupils win math medals
Two Taiwanese 11-year-old boys won three gold medals and one silver at the prestigious Wizards at Mathematics International Contest (WIZMIC) in India. The competition was sponsored by the Indian government and ran from Oct. 30 to Nov. 6. The WIZMIC, on a par with the International Mathematical Olympiad, proved to be challenging for the Taiwanese children because all of the questions were in English and they had to answer in English.
Liao vows KMT will win
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Deputy Secretary-General Liao Feng-teh (廖風德) vowed yesterday to defeat the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in January legislative elections. He said the KMT will work to consolidate all non-DPP forces for Jan. 12 polls and keep the DPP from winning more than 40 seats in the new legislature. He was responding to President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) -- the DPP chairman -- pledge to help the party win at least 50 seats in the elections and seek a "pan-green" legislative majority. Registration for the January elections opened on Friday and will end tomorrow.