Sat, Jun 19, 2010 - Page 3 News List

TSU takes petition to Control Yuan

DOUBLE TROUBLETSU Deputy Secretary-General Liu Yi-teh accused committee members of exceeding their powers and said that the CEC was not even trying

By Shih Hsiu-chuan AND Rich Chang  /  STAFF REPORTERS

Taiwan Solidarity Union Deputy Secretary-General Liu Yi-teh, third from right, stands outside the Control Yuan with other Taiwan Solidarity Union members yesterday.


In a petition to the Control Yuan yesterday, the Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) accused the Referendum Review Committee of exceeding its authority by rejecting the party’s referendum proposal on the government’s planned cross-strait trade pact.

“We hope the Control Yuan members will favor the side of justice and punish members of the Referendum Review Committee who violated the Constitution and deprived people of the right to hold a referendum,” TSU Secretary-General Lin Chih-chia (林志嘉) said yesterday.

On June 3 the Referendum Review Committee rejected a TSU referendum initiative that would have asked voters: “Do you agree that the government should sign an economic cooperative framework agreement [ECFA] with China?”

The committee said “the referendum question’s content and purpose were contradictory” and hence invalid under Article 14, Section 1.4 of the Referendum Act’ (公民投票法).

The act states that referendum questions must not have a “contradiction or obvious error in the content of the proposal, thus making the intention of the proposal not understandable.”

Rebutting the ruling, the TSU on June 6 showed a letter dated May 5 from the Central Elections Commission (CEC) to TSU Chairperson Huang Kun-huei (黃昆輝) that said a CEC meeting held a day earlier did not find a conflict between the referendum proposal and any parts of Article 14, Section 1 of the act.

Citing the act’s Article 3 that stipulates the Executive Yuan as the governing body of the Referendum Act and a public notice by the Executive Yuan with the serial number 0930083141-A that said the CEC is commissioned by the Executive Yuan to handle affairs in connection with the act, the TSU argues the CEC has the authority to process decisions on all parts of Article 14.

TSU Deputy Secretary-General Liu Yi-teh (劉一德) yesterday said the Control Yuan should punish CEC officials for not even trying to defend their authority.

“It was obvious that the members of the Referendum Review Committee had exceeded their powers but CEC officials didn’t say a word,” Liu said. “It was negligence of duty and it impaired the rights of the public.”

The petition was received by Control Yuan member Shen Mei-chen (沈美真).

In related news, an opinion poll released by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) yesterday suggested most Taiwanese harbor doubts over the ECFA.

DPP poll center director Chen Chun-lin (陳俊麟) told a press conference that the poll found 47 percent of respondents who indicated they favor the pan-green camp said there is no hurry to sign the treaty while 45 percent said they were against signing the pact.

While the poll showed 44 percent of people who indicated they favor the pan-blue camp said they supported signing the pact as soon as possible, it also found that another 44 percent said they see no urgency to sign the pact now.

The poll showed that 50 percent of people who indicated they had no political affiliation believed there was no need to rush to sign the pact now, while 17 percent said they were against the proposal, with 12 percent in favor.

The poll also showed that nearly 50 percent of respondents agreed that while an ECFA would bring Taiwan short-term benefits, they believed it would jeopardize Taiwan’s interests in the long-run, with 39 percent disagreeing.

The poll, held on Monday, sampled 1,093 voters aged 20 and over. The poll has an overall margin of error of 3.02 percent.

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