Tue, Jul 05, 2016 - Page 3 News List

Debate on minutes causes legislative meeting’s collapse

By Abraham Gerber  /  Staff reporter

Bickering over meeting minutes paralyzed a meeting of the Legislative Yuan’s Internal Administration Committee, with legislators trading barbs over how and whether legislative objections should be recorded.

The meeting was to discuss amendments to the Condominium Administration Act (公寓大廈管理條例), but was derailed after Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Huang Chao-shun (黃昭順) objected to a motion by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Lee Chun-yi (李俊俋) to amend the minutes of a meeting on Thursday last week to remove a conclusion requiring the Mainland Affairs Council, the Straits Exchange Foundation and other relevant bodies to provide legislators with documentation on recent cross-strait contacts.

“We cannot accept this method of changing meeting minutes, because it would violate legislative rules, especially as this is related to cross-strait relations,” Huang said, adding that the conclusion could only be overturned if legislators present when the conclusion was passed by a consensus moved for it to be considered invalid.

She displayed a comparison of meeting minutes, which purportedly showed that Lee was not present when the conclusion was passed and only raised an objection several minutes later.

“Is a voice recording something you can vote on?” she said, adding that allowing legislators who were not present to challenge consensus conclusions would set a poor precedent.

Huang accused the DPP of using “majority violence” to attempt to keep cross-strait relations opaque.

Lee said he did not oppose requiring government agencies to provide documentation, but added that Huang’s declaration was inaccurate, because legislators had raised objections to the consensus conclusion.

After Huang refused to yield the floor, the committee’s coconvener, DPP Legislator Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁), called several committee breaks, which ultimately extended until the conclusion of the committee’s regular meeting time, leaving the fate of Thursday’s meeting minutes undecided.

Chen said Huang was “interfering with legislative business.”

“It is unfortunate that we have had to temporarily halt business for an entire day because of one person’s legislative boycott,” Chen said, accusing Huang of playing games with legislative business.

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