Hualien County Deputy Commissioner Chang Chi-ming (張志明) yesterday announced his withdrawal from the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) to run in the Hualien County commissioner election as an independent.
Chang lashed out at the KMT for its failure to follow the primary process by seeking to nominate former health minister Yeh Ching-chuan (葉金川) and urged the party to take the matter seriously and respect the voices of residents in Hualien.
“The KMT’s rough handling of the primary process violated legal procedures and damaged procedural justice,” Chang said in a press conference.
“I want to do my job rather than play political games and hopefully my withdrawal will help the party hear the voice of the people of Hualien,” he said.
Chang’s move created another pan-blue split for the KMT in the local government head elections in December and sparked growing concern within the KMT about the party’s performance in the year-end elections.
The KMT suspended the primary election in May and barred KMT Legislator Fu Kun-chi (傅崑萁) from taking part in the primary because he was found guilty in his first and second trials in two cases. It restarted the primary process later after Yeh, the party’s preferred candidate, agreed to join.
Yeh, however, lost the primary to former Hualien County Agricultural Development Office director Tu Li-hua (杜麗華), forcing the KMT to nominate Tu as its candidate.
In response, KMT Chairman Wu Poh-hsiung (吳伯雄) acknowledged yesterday that a series of recent pan-blue splits had given rise to a sense of panic within the party, but shrugged off concerns about its performance in the elections.
“There are always several cases of party members withdrawing for the local government elections,” Wu said.
The KMT is also having trouble finding a candidate for the Yunlin County commissioner election after Chang Li-shan (張麗善) withdrew her candidacy on Monday.
The defeat of Chang Ken-hui (張艮輝) in the Yunlin legislative by-election to the Democratic Progressive Party’s Liu Chien-kuo (劉建國) and the split of local party factions behind Chang Ken-hui and candidate Chang Hui-yuan (張輝元) were the main factors behind her withdrawal.
Wu said the party would choose a new candidate within two or three days and that the candidate would be a party member from Yunlin with integrity and a clean image.
SPEEDING ELETRIC VEHICLES: Available without license requirements, the low-cost vehicles, especially if illicitly modified, can often reach a dangerous speed The government should crack down on illegal electric bicycles and scooters, the non-profit Consumers’ Foundation said on Friday, citing research on the potentially dangerous speed of the vehicles. Electric bicycles and lightweight electric scooters have gained popularity as they do not require registration and riders do not need licenses, the foundation said, adding that as many as 40 percent of them can reach speeds exceeding the legal limit of 25kph for non-licensed two-wheelers. Some consumers also purchased legal electric vehicles and modified them to reach higher speeds, it said. “If the government does not step up efforts to confiscate these
‘RELIABLE PARTNER’: US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar praised the ‘Taiwan model,’ saying that the nation brought its spirit to its COVID-19 response The first memorandum of understanding (MOU) on health cooperation between the Ministry of Health and Welfare and the US Department of Health and Human Services was yesterday signed at the Centers for Disease Control in Taipei. The memorandum was signed between the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in the US, by AIT Director Brent Christensen and Taiwan Council for US Affairs Chairperson Jen-ni Yang (楊珍妮). US Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar and Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) witnessed the signing of the memorandum, designed to enhance the nations’
Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) yesterday tweeted a welcome to Somaliland’s first representative to Taiwan, Mohamed Omar Hagi Mohamoud, who arrived on Friday. Mohamoud had “braved Chinese pressure” to take up his new post, Wu wrote. “The fact ‘sovereignty & friendship aren’t for sale’ deserves international recognition,” referring to a Somaliland media report earlier this month that Somaliland President Muse Bihi Abdi had rejected an offer by the Chinese government in exchange for ending its rapprochement with Taiwan. Wu also thanked the US National Security Council (NSC) for praising Taiwan-Somaliland ties. A council tweet on July 10 praised Taiwan
The US on Thursday removed a warning against all international travel, and placed Taiwan on a list of 13 destinations where the risk of COVID-19 transmission is “very low.” The list was compiled almost five months after the US Department of State issued a “global level 4 health advisory,” urging US citizens to avoid all international travel. On Thursday, the department announced that it was lifting the advisory, saying that “with health and safety conditions improving in some countries and potentially deteriorating in others, the Department is returning to our previous system of country-specific levels of travel advice.” The US