Mon, May 26, 2014 - Page 3 News List

Legislators set to vote on cross-strait oversight bills

Staff writer, with CNA

The Legislative Yuan is set to begin reviewing draft bills purporting to establish a mechanism for attaining more transparency in and closer scrutiny of cross-strait pacts this week, Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) lawmakers said yesterday.

According to the legislative agenda, lawmakers are set to vote on whether to send the bills to the legislature’s Internal Administration Committee for initial review at a floor session tomorrow.

Subjecting cross-strait negotiations and agreements to stricter scrutiny is one of the key issues lawmakers will tackle in the current legislative session and KMT caucus whip Lin Hung-chih (林鴻池) said that the party — which holds more than half of the seats in the legislature — will mobilize its members to vote in favor of sending the bills to the committee.

If the party succeeds in its bid, the committee could start reviewing the proposed legislation as early as Wednesday, said KMT Legislator Chang Ching-chung (張慶忠), one of the committee’s two conveners.

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) caucus leader Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘) said his party would vote against sending the draft bills to the committee, but given the KMT’s legislative majority, the DPP’s efforts seem unlikely to succeed.

The proposed legislation on Taiwan-China agreements was drafted in response to calls for more transparency in cross-strait negotiation and dealmaking, as well as for the institutionalization of an oversight system.

These calls were a core part of the demands made by the Sunflower movement protesters who staged a 24-day occupation of the Legislative Yuan in Taipei in March and last month against the government’s handling of the cross-strait service trade pact signed last year.

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