Tue, Jan 10, 2017 - Page 3 News List

NPP lawmakers shocked by Neil Peng’s resignation

‘MASK OF REFORM’:Some people in the NPP have been harvesting the fruits of other people’s labor, Neil Peng said, adding that he will no longer hold the spotlight on others

By Abraham Gerber  /  Staff reporter

New Power Party (NPP) legislators yesterday expressed shock after NPP board of chairmen member Neil Peng (馮光遠) announced his resignation from the party on Sunday night in an apparent break with NPP Executive Chairman Huang Kuo-chang (黃國昌).

“We will keep communication channels open — we are all shocked and the party will address the matter internally,” NPP caucus whip Hsu Yung-ming (徐永明) said, adding that Peng had only limited participation in party caucus affairs.

“We will try to persuade him to stay and hope that he can continue to work with us,” NPP Legislator Freddy Lim (林昶佐) said.

“There might have been some internal miscommunication and we should all bear responsibility for this,” he added.

Peng, in a Facebook Live broadcast on Sunday night, announced he was leaving the party, saying he was unwilling to allow the “fruits of my labor” to be “harvested by certain people.”

“The NPP has already degenerated into a ‘national prosperity party,’” he said, in an apparent jab at Huang, whose name consists of Mandarin characters for the words “nation” and “prosperous.”

“Some people wearing the mask of reform — fascists, hypocrites, whatever you call them — have been easily harvesting the fruits of everyone’s labor,” Peng added. “The time has come for me to stop holding the spotlight on others.”

Peng was the sole dissenting voice on the board after Huang was re-elected as party executive chairman following last year’s presidential and legislative elections, saying that someone other than a legislator should be executive chairman.

He was the party’s candidate in a New Taipei City legislative district, but withdrew his candidacy due to pressure from the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to avoid splitting the pan-green camp vote.

On Sunday he said that his candidacy had become a “bargaining chip” between the NPP and the DPP, with Huang and caucus whip Hsu absent from the list of people he thanked during his broadcast, which included the NPP’s other three legislators.

He declined to comment yesterday on whether his “national prosperity party” comment was directed at Huang, saying only that Huang had performed well as a lawmaker.

NPP Secretary-General Chen Hui-min (陳惠敏) said Peng had remained a member of the board until he announced his resignation on Sunday.

No replacement election is likely to take place because the board retains its required quorum, she said.

While Huang could not be reached for comment, his aide, Chen Chih-ming (陳志明), appeared to condemn Peng’s comments in a Facebook post.

“An older person who operates on a different tempo has arrogantly and publicly harmed the person our team seeks to protect the most,” he said, drawing comments from netizens.

Some netizens called Peng an “opportunist” and “an old man only interested in flaunting himself,” while others criticized Chen’s post, accusing Huang of not wanting to “get his hands dirty,” and choosing to respond via his aides.

Chen’s post was no longer online at press time last night.

Lee Chao-li (李兆立), another Huang aide, posted a comment to Peng’s video, thanking him for his contribution and wishing him well, while promising the NPP would continue to hold firm to its values and work hard to implement reforms.

Additional reporting by Hsiao Ting-fang

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