Sat, Sep 04, 2010 - Page 3 News List

KMT’s King defends Hau over Flora Expo controversy

By Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin, center, holds up a baseball bat after promising to score a homerun in the year-end Taipei Mayoral election during a press conference held by Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) officials yesterday to muster support for Hau.

PHOTO: LIAO CHEN-HUEI, TAIPEI TIMES

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Secretary-General King Pu-tsung (金溥聰) yesterday defended the Taipei City Government’s organization of the Taipei International Flora Expo and urged the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to stop attacking an event that Taiwanese will be proud of.

Pledging public support for Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) after the expo has courted controversy for the mayor, King said in an interview with the Chinese-­language United Evening News that while the latest poll conducted by the party showed that more than 50 percent of respondents were not satisfied with the Hau team’s failure to clarify issues surrounding the purchases of overpriced flowers and other concerns about the expo, about 50 percent of respondents still expected the expo, the largest international event Taipei has staged, to promote the ­horticultural and tourism industries, while raising Taipei’s international profile.

“About 30 percent of respondents even opposed the DPP’s non-stop attacks on the expo,” King said. “The DPP could hurt itself if it continues the vicious attacks.”

King acknowledged that Hau’s team had not handled the crisis well, but said the KMT would help the team turn the crisis into an opportunity.

“Now is the time for the Hau team to learn lessons from this and adjust its strategies, and it could be a good thing for the team and the KMT ahead of the year-end elections,” King said.

The KMT joined with Hau’s team to defend the expo this week after Hau failed to solve disputes surrounding the event. King met with the mayor last week to discuss strategies and instructed KMT legislators and city councilors to help the city government clarify the issues and promote the event.

King had stressed the KMT’s full support for Hau in a press conference on Wednesday. Yesterday, he shrugged off concerns about the limited number of Hau’s aides, saying the mayor should be advised by various departments as the city government held cross-­departmental meetings regularly.

“The KMT will be united to help the Hau team fight the mayoral election in November and claim victory,” King said.

Also See: EDITORIAL : Learning to give credit where it’s due

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