Wed, Aug 14, 2019 - Page 3 News List

Gou must explain how he plans to avoid Beijing: Ko

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je talks to reporters at Taipei City Hall yesterday.

Photo: Tu Chien-jung, Taipei Times

If Hon Hai Precision Industry founder Terry Gou (郭台銘) plans to run for president, he needs to explain to the public how he would avoid being affected by the Chinese government, as he has major investments there, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) said on Monday.

Ko made the remarks in a TV interview, during which he was asked about a rumor that he would cooperate with Gou and Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) in the presidential and legislative elections on Jan. 11.

Ko was asked to elaborate on his remarks in a meeting at Taipei City Hall yesterday.

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) would likely label Gou “Tung Chee-hwa (董建華) 2.0” if he ran for president, Ko said.

Tung is a Shanghai-born Hong Kong businessman known for his close ties to China who became Hong Kong’s first chief executive after its handover from the UK to China in 1997.

“As Gou has a large amount of assets in China, he has to explain to people how he would deal with it, or else it would become his Achilles heel in the election,” Ko said.

Gou has been accepted as a candidate by the US, Japan and China, but he has entangled relations with them, as Hong Hai is investing in Wisconsin, is the parent company of Japan-based Sharp Corp and has up to 1 million employees in China, Ko said in the interview.

Gou should “let go of what should be let go of,” he added.

Ko said he is worried about the possibility of KMT presidential candidate and Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) becoming president, adding that Taiwan needs a leader who can keep a clear head when dealing with China issues.

“Skills can be learned, but it is difficult to change a person’s moral character,” he said when asked to comment on Han.

However, Ko yesterday said that he was referring to his observations of staff members, as “work skills can be learned, but if a person often spends the night drinking and indulging in sensual pleasures, coming to meetings late and falling asleep, this would be hard to change.”

Ko said in the interview that Want Want China Times Media Group had originally supported him, but later kept its distance, as he “is not very obedient.”

Ko also said that President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) has to take a tougher stance toward China to increase her approval rate, but politics should be stable and beneficial for the nation in the long term.

Tsai yesterday said that she has always considered maintaining cross-strait and regional stability as an important goal, but being the president, she cannot let Taiwan lose its sovereignty bit by bit.

“The nation’s leader must clearly state that Taiwan cannot accept China’s ‘one country, two systems’ formula so that China would not misinterpret us, and the international community would not misunderstand our attitude. The international community has given us its support after we expressed our firm attitude,” she said.

Tsai said some of the remarks that Ko has recently made are biased and a far cry from the attitude held by the international community, adding that he also misused an idiom when describing the situation in Hong Kong.

Comments will be moderated. Keep comments relevant to the article. Remarks containing abusive and obscene language, personal attacks of any kind or promotion will be removed and the user banned. Final decision will be at the discretion of the Taipei Times.

TOP top