Fri, Jan 03, 2014 - Page 3 News List

Campaigners complain about ‘stalling strategy’

By Chris Wang  /  Staff reporter

Members of the Constitution 133 Alliance hold a press conference outside the Central Election Commission building in Taipei yesterday. They said that the commission delayed processing their petition to recall KMT Legislator Wu Yu-sheng.

Photo: George Tsorng, Taipei Times

A recall campaign against Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Wu Yu-sheng (吳育昇) yesterday entered its second phase, during which the Constitution 133 Alliance would need to collect about 40,000 signatures from residents of New Taipei City’s (新北市) six districts for the recall proposal to pass.

“[Collecting signatures] will be difficult, and we have to deal with the questionable administrative procedure of the Central Election Commission, but we will fight to the very end,” award-winning writer Neil Peng (馮光遠), one of the campaign’s primary organizers, said in front of the commission’s headquarters, where he obtained a copy of the petition letter for the second phase.

The alliance submitted 6,000 signatures, representing 2 percent of the electorate, on Nov. 4 and another 1,400, required by the commission, on Dec. 2, Peng said.

However, the commission appeared to have adopted a stalling strategy, taking the maximum of 25 days to review the first batch of signatures and another 25 days for the second batch, he added.

“We suspect that it was a strategy to drag the second phase into the Lunar New Year break, which would make it more difficult for the alliance to collect signatures,” Peng said.

The 30-day second phase was reported to begin today and conclude on Feb. 1, the third day of the six-day Lunar New Year break.

Lin Feng-jeng (林峰正), former executive director of the Judicial Reform Foundation, said the alliance would mobilize all the volunteers it can to scour the constituency’s six districts — Sanjhih (三芝), Shihmen (石門), Tamsui (淡水), Bali (八里), Linkou (林口) and Taishan (泰山) — to collect signatures from the required 13 percent of the electorate.

The alliance initiated the campaign to recall the lawmaker, who it said was committed to partisan voting and ignored public opinion in the legislature.

The campaign was nicknamed the “BMW Movement,” short for bamian Wu (罷免吳) — meaning “recall Wu” in Chinese.

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