Activist groups yesterday campaigned at the Miramar Plaza in Taipei’s Dazhi area to call for amendments to the Referendum Act (公民投票法) and recalling legislators they say are not doing their jobs.
Taiwan March (島國前進) leader Chen Wei-ting (陳為廷) said that President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) administration’s response to the public’s demands across a range of issues has been to hold a national affairs conference on economics and trade and establish a youth advisory group for the Executive Yuan.
Yet while the moves seem to give the impression that the Ma administration is seeking public opinions, it is ignoring calls by groups to hold a “civic constitutional conference.”
Photo: Chien Jung-fong, Taipei Times
Chen said that Taiwan March echoes the Appendectomy Project’s (割闌尾計畫) appeal for a rectification of the Referendum Act, as well the recalling of legislators whom the campaign singled out as failing the public and following only the president’s instructions.
The name of the recall campaign is a play on words since in Chinese, the term for pan-blue lawmakers, lan wei (藍委), is homophonous with the word for “appendix” (闌尾).
Only through direct democracy can the nation prevent a behind-closed-doors political meeting between the Ma administration and the Chinese government from taking place, Chen said.
Taiwan March cofounder Huang Kuo-chang (黃國昌) added that Taiwanese have been disappointed with the representative democracy model employed in the country.
Public policy has been gradually spinning out of control, Huang said, pointing to the Control Yuan nominations fiasco as an example.
The Legislative Yuan on Friday ended a three-week extraordinary session without managing to hold a vote on the list of 29 Control Yuan nominees put forward by Ma, after Democratic Progressive Party and Taiwan Solidarity Union lawmakers blocked the procedure over misgivings about several of the candidates’ qualifications and that some of the nominations were Ma’s way of rewarding his confidants.
Huang yesterday described the list as the worst in Control Yuan history, adding however that Ma was adamant in trying to force his will on the Legislative Yuan.
“When public representatives have gone against the expectations of the people they are meant to serve — and in some cases even lied to them — we must use the power of the Constitution to legally ‘overthrow’ these false representatives,” Huang said.
The Taipei Grand Mosque yesterday said its earlier decision to cancel Eid al-Fitr celebrations on Sunday to mark the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan would stand, even though there have been no new domestic cases of COVID-19 in more than a month. It will be the first time in 60 years that the event has not be held at the mosque. The Ministry of Labor had asked all mosques to suspend Eid al-Fitr celebrations and prayers this year, due to COVID-19 concerns, and encouraged Muslims to pray at home. This year Ramadan began on April 23 and is to
KAOHSIUNG VOTE: A city official allegedly wrote a message calling on supporters of Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu not to participate in the vote next month Prosecutors on Wednesday initiated an investigation of Kaohsiung Civil Affairs Bureau Director-General Tsao Huan-jung (曹桓榮) for allegedly telling supporters of Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) to interfere with a recall vote against Han, while pan-green politicians denounced the mayor and his team for devising ways to obstruct voting. After receiving complaints from residents, the Kaohsiung District Prosecutors’ Office launched its probe of Tsao for alleged breaches of the Civil Servants Election and Recall Act (公職人員選舉罷免法). Complainants provided evidence that Tsao on Saturday last week wrote on messaging app Line that Han supporters should not vote in the June 6 recall vote, saying:
BILINGUAL ASSISTANCE: The center launched a chat bot that features Chinese and English interfaces to provide foreigners with instant information about the pandemic The Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) yesterday said that it would discuss with other nations the possibility of allowing businesspeople to visit on a case-by-case basis. Asked about loosening border restrictions, Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said at the daily CECC news briefing that while the center is cautious about opening the nation’s borders, it would aim to diminish obstacles for important trade interactions without risking transmission of the novel coronavirus. Several foreign representatives in Taiwan have expressed an interest in the matter and the center would conduct related negotiations with the help of the
DELUSIONAL: The male patient said he did not know that the woman had mental problems, but the court said that her being restrained in isolation should have given him pause The Taiwan High Court has ordered the Jhudong branch of the Taiwan National University Hospital and a male patient to jointly pay a former female patient’s family NT$400,000 in compensation after the man had sex with the woman, who has mental problems, while hospitalized. The 26-year-old woman has been diagnosed with a mental disorder, a symptom of which is that she obsessively seeks to have sex, her mother said. The mother filed a formal complaint and sought damages from the hospital and the male patient surnamed Chen (陳) after finding out that her daughter had sex with the man while