Sun, Feb 19, 2017 - Page 3 News List

Pension reform opponents quarrel over fundraising

ADMINISTRATIVE RIGHTSA civil servants’ group says it needs money to pay for an office beside the Legislative Yuan, where it expects to go into battle for the next year

By Abraham Gerber  /  Staff reporter

The National Civil Servant Association will no longer participate in meetings of the Alliance for Monitoring Pension Reform, association president Harry Lee (李來希) said yesterday, as divisions over fundraising solidified.

Lee said the association would not participate in alliance meetings “for the time being,” also ruling out restoring alliance convener Huang Yao-nan’s (黃耀南) administrative rights to the group’s Facebook page until National Federation of Education Unions members “admit their mistake.”

Huang also serves as the association’s director-general, but was stripped of his administrative rights to the group’s Facebook page after a squabble over what account information should be provided when soliciting donations.

National Federation of Education Unions vice president Liu Ya-ping (劉亞平) issued a series of heated missives last week over the incident, accusing Lee of being avaricious and violating previous alliance resolutions.

Lee had posted accounted information for the National Civil Servant Association, stripping Huang of administrative rights after he posted that the alliance had passed resolutions dictating that donations be funneled through the union’s account.

“They want to be the primary leadership, but lack the ability,” Lee said yesterday, adding that union leaders had “blown a fuse.”

“Administrative authority is in our hands because the Facebook group was created by us. We brought teachers union members in to help push back against the government, not slam people on the same side,” he said. “We have to handle those roles getting mixed up because we have a readership of more than 70,000, making the site influential. We will not permit any mistaken ideas or behavior.”

“Telling us to contribute after sewing our pockets closed is asking too much,” he said. “Unions already have the healthiest finances out of all groups because they can rely on membership fees, but civil servants are not required to contribute to our association. How are we supposed to carry on the fight over the next year or so without funding?”

Lee’s association has rented office space next to the Legislative Yuan and begun hiring staff for what is expected to be a heated battle over passage of pension reforms.

“I am the convener of the alliance, so of course I should have administrative rights over our official page,” Huang said.

While individual organizations were welcome to independently raise funds, past alliance meeting resolutions said that the union’s account information should be used on the official site, he said, adding his group was still negotiating with the civil servant association.

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