Premier Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) departed yesterday for Burkina Faso, where he will attend the inauguration on Dec. 20 of President Blaise Compaore on behalf of President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九).
Wu will be the first Taiwan premier to visit the West African ally since the two countries resumed diplomatic ties in 1994. It is also Wu’s first overseas trip in his capacity as premier.
During his one-week stay in Burkina Faso, Wu will visit a new national hospital that was constructed with a loan from a Taiwan bank and guaranteed by the Taiwan government. The national hospital is scheduled to open next year.
Wu is heading an 18-member delegation that includes Minister of Foreign Affairs Timothy Yang (楊進添), Minister of the Council of Labor Affairs Jennifer Wang (王如玄) and Tao Wen-lung (陶文隆), secretary general of the government--operated International Cooperation and Development Fund.
Earlier in the day, in his last public activity in Taipei before his departure, Wu spoke of Taiwan’s “One Lamp in Africa” program, which aims to bring light to the homes of disadvantaged Burkina Faso students.
Wu said many students in that country are forced to study on the streets at night by the light of street lamps because they do not have lights at home.
Under the program, Taiwan has developed a solar-powered LED lamp equipped with a solar cell that lasts up to 4.5 hours and allows students to study at home, Wu said.
The children can charge the solar cell during the day and bring it home after school, he added.
The program is being supported by the World Bank, which has placed orders with Taiwanese businesses for the LED lamps for delivery as aid to African countries, Wu said.
A Taipei veterinarian is urging pet owners to avoid using insecticides around their homes, as their ingredients can be toxic to pets. Commercial-grade insecticides contain pyrethroids — organic compounds similar to natural pyrethrins, pesticides produced by flowers such as chrysanthemums — in quantities that are harmless to humans, but potentially fatal to cats and dogs, Asian Veterinary Specialist Referral Center veterinarian Chua Man-ling (蔡曼琳) said. Even in small quantities, pyrethroids are hazardous to cats, as they lack the metabolic enzymes needed to process them, Chua said. Cockroach sprays and ant traps are especially dangerous to pets as they contain boric acid, she
People should avoid eating too many zongzi (粽子, glutinous rice wrapped in bamboo leaves), as consuming several in one meal could cause indigestion, bloating, gastric acid reflux, heartburn and other stomach ailments, a doctor said on Saturday. Zongzi is a traditional delicacy for the Dragon Boat Festival, which was on Thursday. Citing a recent case as an example, Cathay General Hospital gastroenterology department head Chu Yu-ming (朱淯銘) said that a 58-year-old taxi driver surnamed Hsiao (蕭) ate meals at irregular hours due to his work and has been taking diabetes medicine for three years. Hsiao recently bought a bag of zongzi and ate
DREAMING OF TRAVEL: About 7,000 people applied for the experience, with about 60 chosen for the first flight yesterday, which includes boarding an airplane Starved of the travel experience during COVID-19? Taipei International Airport (Songshan airport) has the solution — a fake itinerary where you check in, go through passport control and security, and even board the aircraft. You just never leave. The airport yesterday began offering travelers the chance to do just that, with about 60 people eager to get going, albeit to nowhere. About 7,000 people applied to take part, with the winners chosen by random. More fake flight experiences are to take place in the coming weeks. “I really want to leave the country, but because of the pandemic, lots of flights cannot fly,”
A DEPRIVATION? The Taiwan Higher Education Union said the program, which drew much student criticism, undermined students' right to an education The Taiwan Higher Education Union on Monday accused Ming Chuan University (MCU) of sacrificing its students’ right to education by altering the English-language instruction for first-year students. The university, which has long emphasized the value that it places on English-language education, in the 2019-2020 academic year changed its English program for first-year students to a combination of self-learning through online videos and weekly lab sessions, during which students would take online tests, the union said. The change has deprived more than 3,000 students of in-person instruction and of interaction with their teachers, the union added. The online program drew much criticism from students