Greater Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chu (陳菊) took her oath and began her four-year term in office yesterday, pledging to open new horizons for the port city that was officially merged with neighboring Kaohsiung County to become a special municipality.
Stressing that all resources would be equally shared and fairly distributed, she also pledged to reduce the gap between rural and urban areas.
“I pledge there will absolutely be no such thing as a so-called ‘one city, two systems,’” she said.
She also called on the central government to attach more importance to the voices of southern Taiwanese.
Minister without Portfolio Lin Junq-tzer (林政則) presided over the swearing-in ceremony and handed over to Chen the official seal.
Lin reiterated President Ma Ying-jeou’s (馬英九) concern for striking a balanced development between the north and south of the country, and noted that many of the central government’s 12 major development projects would be carried out in the south.
Former premier Frank Hsieh (謝長廷), a former Kaohsiung mayor, also took part in the ceremony, which was marred by a tiny group of protesters who demanded that Chen step down over controversy about the construction of a liquid petroleum gas station in the city.
Both Chen and Hsieh are Democratic Progressive Party heavyweights.
Immediately following her inauguration, Chen called a meeting with all bureau chiefs and approved several documents, including one to set up a committee to promote reconstruction in areas damaged by Typhoon Morakot last year.
The economy, flood prevention, public security, green energy and rural development would be high on her agenda as part of her efforts to transform Taiwan’s largest port city, according to Chen.
Budget: NT$106.6 billion
Loans: NT$253.6 billion
Allocation of funds: NT$49.88 billion
Accumulated debt: NT$226.7 billion
Mayor: Chen Chu (陳菊)
Deputy mayors: Liu Shih-fang (劉世芳), Lee Yung-te (李永得) and Chen Chi-yu (陳啟昱)
Secretary-general: Hao Chien-sheng (郝建生)
City Council seats: KMT: 29; DPP: 28; Others: 9
Greater Kaohsiung City Government: 2, Sihwei 3rd Rd, Lingya District, Greater Kaohsiung
Greater Kaohsiung City Council: 192, Jhongjheng 4th Rd, Cianjin District, Greater Kaohsiung