Thu, Dec 28, 2017 - Page 3 News List

DPP picks more local candidates

KMT BASTIONS:Tsai Ing-wen said she was confident Hung Kuo-hao could win in Nantou County, as he was the first DPP politician to be elected chair of an irrigation association

By Chen Wei-han  /  Staff reporter

President and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen, center, yesterday at the party’s headquarters in Taipei announces that Caotun Township Chief Hung Kuo-hao, left, and DPP Legislator Liu Chao-hao have been nominated to run for Nantou County and Taitung County commissioners in the local elections next year.

Photo: Wang Yi-sung, Taipei Times

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) has nominated Caotun Township (草屯) Mayor Hung Kuo-hao (洪國浩) and DPP Legislator Liu Chao-hao (劉櫂豪) to run for county commissioner in Nantou and Taitung counties respectively, both of which have long been Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) strongholds.

In line with expectations, the party yesterday finalized the nomination process for the two candidates to run in the local elections, which are to be held on Nov. 29 next year.

President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) personally endorsed the nominees.

It was the DPP’s second round of nominations, following its confirmation last month of nine incumbent mayors and county commissioners to run for re-election.

Hung has received praise for turning a deficit of NT$200 million (US$6.68 million) in Caotun’s finances to a surplus during his tenure, Tsai said.

“Everyone said it was impossible and told him not to bother, because the government would not collapse, but Kuo-hao was persistent, saying it was taxpayers’ money and the government could not function properly when it is indebted,” Tsai said. “He has proven himself to be a man of his word.”

Hung, a former chairman of the Nantou Irrigation Association, was the first DPP member to be elected as chairperson of an irrigation association.

The association elections were opaque and candidates were prevented from getting association members’ details, but Hung led his team to win a foothold for the DPP in the county, Tsai said.

Liu has a vision of how to improve Taitung and a strong presence in the constituency, Tsai said.

As the party’s caucus chief executive, Liu has contributed to the passage of major bills, Tsai said, adding that he was her student when she taught at National Chengchi University.

The Amis Music Festival, a once-minor event initiated by Amis singer Suming Rupi that has evolved into a major local festivity celebrating Amis musical tradition, owes its success to the “Taitung dream,” as the county offers a vision to motivate residents to pursue their dreams, Liu said, adding that he would continue to sustain Taitung’s unique quality.

Both candidates pledged to improve local infrastructure, renew agriculture, promote tourism and cultural traditions, and improve the entrepreneurial environment in the two counties.

“Taiwanese three years ago entrusted the DPP with the administration of 13 cities and counties, and our mayors and commissioners have been diligent and achieved outstanding results over the past three years,” Tsai said. “The two candidates we have nominated today are the embodiment of the DPP’s philosophy of integrity, diligence and love of the land.”

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