The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) yesterday said it would boycott the review of the cross-strait service trade agreement by the Legislative Yuan’s joint committee today and tomorrow.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Chang Ching-chung (張慶忠), convener of the meeting this week, has placed the service trade agreement on the agenda to review the deal clause-by-clause.
“We will not give Chang any opportunity to step on the podium and convene the meeting,” DPP Legislator Gao Jyh-peng (高志鵬) told a press conference.
The DPP insisted that Chang, whose unilateral decision on March 17 to send the deal to the plenary session without deliberation sparked a student-led protest and occupation of the legislature, was no longer qualified to serve as one of two conveners of the Internal Administration Committee, which is leading the review by the legislature’s eight committees.
It appears that the KMT is playing a two-handed strategy by having caucus whip Lin Hung-chih (林鴻池) offer his resignation as apology for creating controversy and Chang placing the pact on the agenda, Gao said.
Gao said that the Internal Administration Committee had passed a resolution that the agreement would not be reviewed in the current session until a bill on monitoring cross-strait agreements is passed — one of the demands made by the students occupying the legislative chamber since March 18.
Lin said the KMT’s decision was made in response to the public’s demand for the service trade agreement to be reviewed clause-by-clause and urged the DPP not to boycott the meeting.
Lin Fei-fan (林飛帆), one of the student movement’s leaders, said Chang should not convene the joint review meeting as he had lost legitimacy to serve as convener after his move tarnished Taiwan’s representative democracy.