Thu, Apr 15, 2010 - Page 3 News List

King tells party to have faith in November polls

By Ko Shu-ling  /  STAFF REPORTER

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Secretary-General King Pu-tsung (金溥聰) yesterday said he could not say for certain how many seats his party would win in November's five special municipality elections, but party members must have faith that they would prevail.

King said elections were like a sports competition and that no one knew what would happen until the very last minute.

“Indeed, there are two cities that are more difficult to win. They are Tainan and Kaohsiung,” he said in an interview with Singapore's Chinese-language newspaper Lianhe Zaobao (聯合早報), which was published yesterday.

Elections for the heads of five special municipalities will take place on Nov. 27 in Taipei City, Sinbei City (the upgraded Taipei County), Greater Taichung (a merger of Taichung city and county), Greater Tainan (a merger of Tainan city and county) and Greater Kaohsiung (a merger of Kaohsiung city and county).

King said some party members were worried that he would step down if the party failed to win at least three seats. He always told them to rest assured because they would win.

“You just have to have faith. It is important,” he said.

On party reform, King said his job was to put into practice President Ma Ying-jeou's (馬英九) plans for reform. Ma is also the KMT chairman.

“The concept is clear. We want the party to get rid of its negative image and get a brand new one,” he said. “The negative image includes vote-buying. When you ask people which political party buys more votes, chances are they will tell you it's the KMT.”

Asked whether the party's old guard would stand in the way of reform, King said the party seemed to be faring bettter than the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

King expressed concern over what he called “hate politics,” saying the DPP used to play the ethnic card and on tensions between Taiwan and China.

“They always portrayed China as a bully and that any KMT member with a similar background to Ma [Ying-jeou] will sell out Taiwan,” he said. “It's quite ridiculous.”

King said a person does not necessarily have to like Ma or his administration, but the person does not need to hate him.

“In a democracy, you can opt not to elect him in the next election, but you don't have to vilify him,” he said. “It shows the immature side of Taiwan's politics. This kind of hate politics is worrisome.”

In related news, the KMT said it would conduct polls on aspirants vying for the party's mayoral nominations in Taipei City, Greater Kaohsiung and Greater Tainan today and tomorrow.

KMT Taipei City Councilor Yang Shih-chiu (楊實秋), who will be competing in the polls for Taipei City, yesterday questioned the transparency of the process. He said he would not send anyone to observe the polls nor offer any opinions on the survey questions.

KMT spokesman Su Jun-pin (蘇俊賓), however, dismissed Yang’s concerns and urged party members to refrain from making groundless accusations.

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