Tue, Jul 16, 2019 - Page 3 News List

2020 ELECTION: Groups intensify efforts to recall Han

By Wang Jung-hsiang and Sherry Hsiao  /  Staff reporter, with staff writer

Representatives of Citizens Mowing Action and We Care Kaohsiung hold signs at an outdoor news conference in Kaohsiung yesterday.

Photo: Wang Jung-hsiang, Taipei Times

Citizens Mowing Action and We Care Kaohsiung yesterday said they would step up efforts to recall Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) after he won the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) presidential primary poll.

The two groups are leading a campaign to collect signatures to force a recall vote on the mayor.

Han is a “runaway mayor” who is uninterested in governing the city and who “lies and lies,” said We Care Kaohsiung cofounder Aaron Yin (尹立), who served as the director-general of the Kaohsiung Bureau of Cultural Affairs under former mayor Chen Chu (陳菊) and former acting mayor Hsu Li-ming (許立明) before resigning on Nov. 7 to lead the movement.

This is no longer a matter of regional politics or party allegiance, he said.

“First of all, I represent the Citizens Mowing Action in congratulating Mayor Han,” a representative from the group who declined to be named said.

“At the same time, I am announcing that the entire movement to recall Han has officially been upgraded,” they said, adding that their slogan would be: “Kaohsiung proposes a recall, all of Taiwan supports an election loss.”

Since Han is not stepping down as mayor to run for president and would “neglect” his municipal responsibilities, people have no choice but to join the forces and support a recall of Han and perform a “recall upgrade,” they said, adding that the group would see the recall petition through to the end.

Han said he would focus “zero percent on politics, 100 percent on the economy” when he was running for mayor, but instead he has focused “zero percent” on both the economy and city governance, Yin said.

Han was mayor for 203 days before he “ran away” to run for president, he said.

Han took office on Dec. 25 last year.

Since Han has taken no action in terms of governing the city, people should take away his job, Yin said.

The disappointment and anger that Kaohsiung residents feel toward Han are reflected in the number of signatures that the campaign organizers have collected for a recall petition, he said.

In the 18 days since the petition was initiated on June 27, Citizens Mowing Action, We Care Kaohsiung and the Taiwan Radical Wings party have collected a total 130,000 signatures, he said.

He believes they will achieve their target of 300,000 signatures by the anniversary of Han’s inauguration, he said, adding that many volunteers and businesses that have joined the campaign wear masks or keep a low profile for fear of being “bullied” by Han’s supporters.

Citizens Mowing Action and We Care Kaohsiung also released new graphics for their campaign.

The former, whose name is a play on caobao (草包, “country bumpkin,” or literally “straw bag”), a nickname Han’s critics have given him, designed an image of a Formosan black bear holding a sickle, while the latter released stickers with the Chinese characters for “recall Han,” along with either “Yes, I do!” or “Dismiss him” in English at the bottom.

The colors of the Republic of China flag were used in the stickers to symbolize that the campaign is not bounded by political or regional borders, the group said.

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