Fri, Nov 30, 2018 - Page 3 News List

Obasang to form political party

PROMISING NUMBERS:Alliance convener Chang Shu-hui said that despite platforms not designed to attract votes, candidates in last week’s elections performed well

By Ann Maxon  /  Staff reporter

Members of the Obasang Alliance attend a news conference in Taipei on Aug. 29.

Photo: CNA

The Obasang Alliance, founded by a group of nonpartisan mothers running for local councilor seats, yesterday said it is to form a political party to continue fighting for children’s rights, gender equality and environmental justice, despite losses in the nine-in-one elections on Saturday last week.

“In this transitional process, the most important thing is not determining the form or system of the party, but rather maintaining members’ individuality and, in a similar sense, the alliance’s values,” alliance convener Chang Shu-hui (張淑慧) told a news conference outside the Legislative Yuan in Taipei.

As a party, the alliance would be faithful to its beliefs, but at the same time collaborate with like-minded parties, she said, adding: “As mothers who care about democracy, communication is what we are best at.”

The alliance was formed in December last year by a group of mothers concerned about the future of the next generations, it said.

Members contested city and county councilor elections as independents, but shared views on a number of issues, including promoting gender equality, children’s rights and family-friendly infrastructure, as well as improving labor conditions and reducing air pollution, it said.

Although none of its 21 candidates were elected, they received on average 3.09 percent of votes, while candidates in more than 70 percent of electoral districts passed the threshold to have their election deposit refunded, Chang said.

“The figures showed we were running for councilor seats in a plain, commoner’s way and that we ran seriously,” Chang said.

The election results suggest the alliance lacks experience, but they are ready to learn how to make improvements, she said.

“We had no platforms designed to attract votes, only platforms that require long-term work, but despite that we received more than 80,000 votes,” she said, adding that the candidates were grateful for those who voted for them knowing they had little chance of winning.

Politics should not be a privilege shared by a small number of people in the ruling class, but rather promoted by people who “truly care about disadvantaged people, have the strongest sense of morality, believe most firmly in political ideals and would never compromise important values,” she said, adding: “We will never change our values to increase our chances of getting elected.”

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