Mon, Jan 16, 2012 - Page 2 News List

2012 ELECTIONS: GPT improves its standing, but is still not in legislature

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff Reporter

Despite failing to secure any legislative seats in the Saturday’s election, the Green Party Taiwan (GPT) saw a substantial surge in support, garnering 229,566 party votes, almost four times the number of votes it received in 2008 (58,473)

Although the GPT did not pass the 5 percent threshold needed to allow it to send a legislator-at-large to the legislature, the party, known for its focus on environmental protection and social justice, received 1.74 percent of the total party vote, the fifth-most votes among the 11 parties.

GPT spokesperson Pan Han-shen (潘翰聲) posted an article on his blog after the election, saying: “Our opponent is not a person, but a system. We have to accept the outcome of the election and continue to move toward the critical point of change.”

“The people are eager for clean air, clean water and clean food. These are rights that we have to stand up for,” he said.

Pan, who failed in his bid as a legislative candidate in Taipei, said he would continue to campaign for an energy tax, increases to the amount of green space and for a nuclear-free homeland, which he added was the most wide-ranging and urgent issue.

Notably, the GPT garnered about 35.76 percent of the party vote in Lanyu Township (蘭嶼), where the suspected leakage of radioactive material from a nuclear waste dump is a hot--button issue and led the Tao Aborigines on the island to hold a protest last month.

Sinan Mavivo, a member of the Tao tribe and a legislator-at-large candidate for the GPT, said: “I think this is probably the closest the Tao people have been to the Legislative Yuan in the history of Taiwanese elections.”

“I’ve held the idea that ‘I want to bring the anti-nuclear voices from Lanyu to the legislature’ from the beginning,” she said. “I believe the anti-nuclear voices from Lanyu will not disappear from Taiwan after the election and this is my mission for the land.”

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