Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Wu Poh-hsiung (吳伯雄) yesterday dismissed comments about the diminishing importance of the party’s Central Standing Committee, adding that President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) had asked Cabinet members to attend the committee’s weekly meetings to strengthen cooperation between the two sides.
“Participation by government officials will enhance the function of the committee. Attending the committee meetings is also helpful for officials. It’s a conventional practice in party politics,” Wu said after casting his vote on the election of committee members in Taipei.
The 32-member committee held its membership vote yesterday, with lawmakers grabbing a majority — or 19 — of the seats.
The committee is the KMT’s highest decision-making body, but only 40 party members registered to compete for the 32 seats.
KMT Legislator Huang Chao-shun (黃昭順) topped the newly elected member list yesterday with 1,191 votes, followed by incumbent committee members Yao Chiang-lin (姚江臨), KMT Legislator John Chiang (蔣孝嚴) and KMT youth corps member Hsieh Kun-hong (謝坤宏).
Wu said Ma and Premier Liu Chao-shiuan (劉兆玄) suggested that Cabinet members attend the central standing committee meetings on Wednesday on a regular basis to enhance its function.
Presidential Office Secretary-General Chan Chun-po (詹春柏) confirmed yesterday that Executive Yuan Secretary-General Hsueh Hsiang-chuan (薛香川) had accepted the KMT’s invitation to also attend the party’s Zhongshan meeting (中山會報) every Tuesday.
The Zhongshan meeting was set up by Ma when he served as party chairman as a preparatory meeting one day before the committee’s weekly meeting. The proposed policies discussed during the prepatory meeting are presented to the committee for final approval.
Hsueh said he would attend the meeting this Tuesday to enhance communication between high-ranking party members and the administration.
“Negotiations and communications on the policies of the two sides are very important,” he said.
Chan and Hsueh both denied that such a move would promote “one-party rule,” insisting that the administration’s participation in the KMT’s decision-making process would strengthen the government’s communication with party legislators, as they hold the majority in the committee.
“The party and the administration each play a different role and serves different function,” Chan said after casting his vote.
KMT Legislator Wu Yu-sheng (吳育昇), a close aide of Ma, Taipei City Councilor Li Keng Kuei-fang (厲耿桂芳) and six other KMT members were elected as committee members for the first time.