Former premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) remained tight-lipped yesterday about his candidacy in the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) chairperson election, but said he would speak on a wide range of issues next week.
Speaking on the sidelines of an event organized by his office, the Eball Foundation, Su said he had been “extensively consulting party members recently” on the May 27 election and would make a public announcement next week.
According to a DPP election announcement released on Monday, candidates for party chairperson can register for the election between Monday and Friday next week.
Su, who served as DPP chairman for 10 months in 2005, is seen by some political observers and DPP members as the strongest candidate among a group of aspirants that includes former Tainan county commissioner Su Huan-chih (蘇煥智), former vice premier Wu Rong-i (吳榮義) and former DPP legislator Chai Trong-rong (蔡同榮).
Su Tseng-chang spoke on various issues before joining with children to create a giant drawing to celebrate Children’s Day yesterday.
Asked about a potential presidential pardon for former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁), the former lawyer said the most important task at hand was seeking a release on medical grounds for Chen, so that his deteriorating health can be improved.
Chen is serving a 17-and-a-half-year sentence for corruption.
A presidential pardon would not be possible before all of the legal proceedings against him are completed, Su Tseng-chang said.
However, some of the cases against Chen have been dragging on for too long, he added, and the judiciary should speed up the legal procedure and ensure a fair trial.
Su Tseng-chang said he hoped the DPP would reach a resolution on its position on various planned protests and marches on May 20, because it takes joint efforts for the voice of the people to be heard.
Su Tseng-chang also warned the government on rising commodity prices and possible inflationary risks after fuel prices were raised by 7 to 11 percent on Monday.
Citing his past experience, he said the former DPP administration had always been very cautious when dealing with gasoline prices because they could trigger an overall increase in commodity prices.
Taiwanese have been having a hard time and the government should have been more cautious on the issue, he said.