The Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU) yesterday announced a plan to organize a protest near the Presidential Office on May 20, the day President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) is due to be inaugurated for a second term.
According to TSU caucus whip Hsu Chung-hsin (許忠信), the event will be aimed at allowing people to voice their grievances against the Ma administration over the rising cost of living, ractopamine residues in beef imports, outbreaks of bird flu on local chicken farms and the forced demolition of homes for urban renewal.
Hsu said the party would go ahead with the plan even though the Taipei City Government has rejected its application for a permit to stage the demonstration. He alleged that the city government has done so at the request of the Presidential Office, which he described as “fearful of hearing people’s voices.”
He also said the TSU is hoping to invite the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and various civic organizations to take part in the protest and would file another application next week for permission to stage it.
In response to the TSU’s proposal, DPP caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘) said his party began a month ago to evaluate the possibility of holding a protest against the Ma administration.
He said the DPP would discuss the plan with the TSU.
DPP spokesman Lo Chih-cheng (羅致政) said his party is still trying to work out the details and has not decided on when, where or how the protest would be held.
The Presidential Office said that it is completely lawful for the organizing committee of the presidential inauguration to apply to have the roads surrounding the Presidential Office reserved for the purpose of the ceremony.