Thu, Dec 16, 2010 - Page 3 News List

Annette Lu denies penning anti-Tsai statement

FRAGILE RELATIONSHIP:Following last month’s polls, Lu said she did not understand why the media continued to portray Tsai Ing-wen as a possible presidential candidate

By Vincent Y. Chao  /  Staff reporter

Former vice president Annette Lu, center, talks to reporters on the sidelines of a meeting of the Democratic Progressive Party’s Central Executive Committee yesterday.

PHOTO: CHANG CHIA-MING, TAIPEI TIMES

Former vice president Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) has denied local media reports that she penned a statement believed to be aimed at senior opposition party figures, saying yesterday that it was “written by an assistant with divine inspiration.”

Lu, a member of the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) Central Executive Committee, sought to downplay her connection with the statement released by her office on Tuesday, which accused the party of “overly beautifying one person.”

Written at the same time the DPP is mulling its selection process for the 2012 presidential election, the statement was widely seen as criticism of DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), acknowledged as one of the frontrunners for the party’s nomination.

“The DPP should fix an impasse where it is dominated by one faction and [set on] overly beautifying one person,” the statement said. “Instead, [the party] should create a set of nomination procedures that are fair, open and reasonable.”

Asked about the statement, Lu maintained that she was not the author, but refused to say whether she agreed with the content. Instead, she suggested that her assistant’s comments were open to interpretation.

Lu is believed to be unhappy with speculation that Tsai could soon announce a run for president, despite losing the Sinbei City special municipality election last month.

Following the poll results, she questioned why the DPP could not seem to “find a better candidate” for the presidential election and said she did not understand why the media continued to portray Tsai as a possible candidate.

Asked about the statement following a meeting with Lu and other members of the Central Executive Committee, Tsai said she had not seen the statement, but highlighting the apparently fragile relationship between the two, Tsai stressed that she had made a point of going over to the former vice president to “give her a greeting” prior to the meeting, held to discuss the timing and format of the party’s upcoming annual party congress.

In other developments, senior party officials yesterday confirmed that the party’s national congress would take place on Jan. 22 at the Taipei International Convention Center. The event is believed to be one of the most important events to be held by the party next year.

A task force has been set up by the party to organize the congress, comprising several senior party members, including former premier Frank Hsieh (謝長廷), the party’s presidential candidate in 2008.

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