Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) yesterday urged Taipei Dome contractor Farglory Group to honor its word and complete a construction license change for the Taipei Dome complex in accordance with the law, after the conglomerate again sparked turmoil over the build-operate-transfer (BOT) project.
Farglory spokesman Jacky Yang (楊舜欽) — just seven hours after Ko announced his decision to retain the contract on Thursday — said that the company would abide by “existing” provisions in the safety review processes for the complex, and the seven safety standards, which Farglory says have no legal basis, do not fall within that category.
Yang targeted a comment by Taipei Department of Urban Development Commissioner Lin Jou-min (林洲民), who said that the standards were based on provisions that apply to “Taipei, the nation and Farglory,” saying that the conglomerate disagrees with Lin’s claim and that it would not comply with any reviews carried out according to the “illegitimate” standards.
“I hope that Farglory would value its reputation,” Ko said in response to reporters’ questions on the sidelines of a news conference yesterday.
“We will use the commitments that they laid down in black and white as the central reference,” Ko said, citing a letter of consent Farglory delivered to the Taipei City Government on Wednesday, stating its willingness to finish the project according to the city’s bylaws.
Despite saying that he would not comment on this issue, Ko could not contain his frustration with his predecessor, Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) vice chairman Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌), when asked by reporters about a swipe Hau had taken at him on Thursday, after Ko announced that the BOT contract was to be continued.
Hau said that Ko had been “hatching an egg” — a play on “big egg,” the Chinese phrase for dome-shaped stadiums — for 500 days, but all that he brought forth was a “Psyduck,” a character in the hit mobile game Pokemon Go that is widely said to bear a resemblance to Ko.
“Let me tell you: I am only cleaning up the mess [Hau] left behind,” Ko said.
A proposal by the Taiwan Railways Administration (TRA) to permanently ban sitting in Taipei Railway Station’s main hall has received a mixed reaction online, with some social media users vowing to launch a sit-in at the station. Gatherings at the hall have been prohibited since Feb. 29 in accordance with the Central Epidemic Command Center’s policy of reducing crowd sizes in public places. A Facebook user organizing the sit-in said that the hall is a public space and there is no legitimate reason to ban sitting on the floor. He said he suspected that the proposal was made due to business considerations and
Chinese over-the-top (OTT) service provider iQiyi cannot register as a provider in Taiwan after the Mainland Affairs Council declared it to be an illegal service, the National Communications Commission (NCC) said yesterday. Both iQiyi and WeTV were deemed to be illegal Chinese OTT operators in an interdepartmental meeting on Friday last week, officials said, adding that this prohibits them from marketing their services in Taiwan or seeking subscribers. The government plans to block a local server that iQiyi has been using to transmit content to domestic audiences, which would disrupt its content transmission. OTT Entertainment Ltd, which is enlisted by iQiyi to
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: