Thu, Feb 04, 2016 - Page 3 News List

Tsai mum on speculation over Lin

By Loa Iok-sin  /  Staff reporter

President-elect Tsai Ing-wen, center, and Taoyuan Mayor Cheng Wen-tsan, left, yesterday pose with the mascot of this year’s Lantern Festival, which will take place in Taoyuan, before attending a Democratic Progressive Party Central Standing Committee meeting at the party’s headquarters in Taipei.

Photo: Liu Hsin-de, Taipei Times

President-elect Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) yesterday neither confirmed nor denied speculation that former minister of finance Lin Chuan (林全) might be appointed premier after she assumes office in May.

The speculation again caught media attention after Tsai appointed Lin, along with Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Secretary-General Joseph Wu (吳釗燮) and former DPP secretary-general Lin Hsi-yao (林錫耀), a co-convener of her transition team to handle the transfer of power from the administration of President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九).

Tsai also said on Tuesday that Lin Chuan might not continue to serve as executive director of the New Frontier Foundation.

“I was just saying that if he [Lin Chuan] does not continue to serve [on the foundation], there are many other possibilities,” Tsai said yesterday, when asked whether he would become a Cabinet member.

Asked whether Lin Chuan would be appointed premier, Tsai said: “It is too early to tell.”

“The three people on the task force [for transition of power] represent the think tank, the policy department, the party secretary-general and the campaign chief executive,” Tsai said. “They head up the three major systems, and I have therefore asked them to form the task force out of functional considerations. It does not necessarily have any connection to future personnel arrangements.”

Tsai added that she would make an announcement when she has finalized decisions on official appointments.

Lin Chuan, an economist and a professor, is one of Tsai’s most trusted aides, reports say.

In other news, Legislative Speaker Su Jia-chyuan (蘇嘉全) reiterated his determination to push for reforms to turn the legislature into a committee-oriented organization.

To show their determination to push for legislative reforms, Su and his deputy, Tsai Chi-chang (蔡其昌), resigned as members of the DPP Central Standing Committee on Monday, after they were elected speaker and deputy speaker earlier that day.

Su also vowed to make legislative committees the centers of the legislature, triggering media inquiries as to whether he might be worried about becoming a “powerless” legislative speaker.

“If the legislative procedures could run smoothly, the legislature could become truly committee-

oriented, and there could be quality and efficient legislation, it would be a good thing even if that means I have to become powerless,” Su said.

Asked whether he was concerned that DPP caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘), who was also interested in running for speaker, might become an “underground speaker” as the DPP caucus holds an absolute majority, Su said the public might have misunderstood Ker.

“Ker is very loyal to the party and focused on what he does; therefore, he is the right person to help negotiate a shared view on bills among caucus members,” Su said. “What is more important is meeting the public’s expectations.”

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