The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) caucus called on Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) to “make public her stance” on the cross-strait agreement oversight draft bill after the opposition parties yesterday again blocked the legislature’s floor meeting where the draft was to be discussed.
DPP and Taiwan Solidarity Union lawmakers have occupied the legislative speaker’s podium since yesterday morning, protesting over the KMT caucus’ plan to have the floor meeting, with its majority, agree to refer the cross-strait agreement oversight draft to a standing committee for deliberation within the week.
If the draft is successfully passed on to the Internal Administration Committee this week, the committee meeting to discuss the proposal would be presided over by KMT Legislator Chang Ching-chung (張慶忠) — who caused an public uproar with his decision to abruptly end a joint legislative committee review of the cross-strait service trade pact, triggering the student-led Sunflower movement in March — rather than DPP Legislator Chen Chih-mai (陳其邁).
The opposition legislators also demanded an early end to the legislature’s second extraordinary session in the face of the disaster in Greater Kaohsiung and the rescue and restoration efforts required.
The KMT caucus held a press conference yesterday calling on Tsai to make her stance on the oversight draft clear and accusing the opposition parties and some civic groups of “fraud” when they urged the passage of an oversight act, but obstructed the process.
KMT deputy caucus whip Alex Fai (費鴻泰) said the students and civic groups have been bidding for the establishment of an oversight mechanism since March, and both the KMT and the Executive Yuan have proposed their versions of the draft legislation.
“Five months have passed and the draft still lies idle in the legislature, even though we had negotiated with the DPP, agreeing to let them chair the committee meeting for the deliberation,” Fai said.
“The opposition parties had cried out for the oversight mechanism, but are afraid to review the draft now. Are we destined to have a stalled cross-strait relationship?” KMT Legislator Alicia Wang (王育敏) asked.
Fai denied that there is a need for an early end to the extra session, emphasizing that the restoration effort could be performed in parallel with a working legislature.