Fri, Nov 29, 2019 - Page 3 News List

Simon Chang apologizes over hospital remark

‘NO CURSE MEANT’:The KMT’s vice presidential candidate said that if Su Tseng-chang does his job, ‘a curse would not make a difference’ to his health

By Ann Maxon  /  Staff reporter

Premier Su Tseng-chang at the Executive Yuan in Taipei yesterday speaks about a statement by Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) vice presidential candidate Simon Chang.

Photo courtesy of the Executive Yuan

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) vice presidential candidate Simon Chang (張善政) yesterday apologized for saying that Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) would end up back in a hospital if he kept criticizing the KMT.

Su on Nov. 18 took a leave of absence due to a virus-induced facial palsy. Although he returned to work the next day, he has canceled his scheduled appearances at public events.

Chang on Wednesday told a news conference in New Taipei City’s Tamsui District (淡水) that Su has become quieter after his hospitalization.

“Let me tell you something. If he keeps lashing out all the time after he returns to work at the Executive Yuan, God would make him go back to the hospital very soon,” he said.

Chang yesterday said he was sorry if his remarks made Su or his family uncomfortable.

“I would like to say I am sorry and that I wish him good health. I definitely did not mean to curse him,” he said.

He had meant to urge Su to stop criticizing others and do his work as premier, Chang said.

If Su starts to do his work, “he would of course stop criticizing others and, as a result, a curse would not make a difference,” he said.

Executive Yuan spokeswoman Kolas Yotaka said that as a former premier, Chang should always speak the truth and not allow elections to lead him astray.

Su has a sense of humor and magnanimity, Kolas said.

He has met many challenges and faced all kinds of perplexing attacks, so he would not pay Chang’s “escapade” any mind, she said.

Su’s daughter, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Su Chiao-hui (蘇巧慧), said that she was “very upset” about Chang’s initial comment.

Politicians can compete in elections, “but we should not make such horrible remarks about our opponents’ health and life,” she told reporters at the Legislative Yuan yesterday.

“This has reached the bottom,” she said, urging voters to think carefully about what kind of people they want as the nation’s leaders.

Asked if she would press charges against Chang, Su Chiao-hui said that the harm done by his remark cannot be undone.

To defend him, Chang’s supporters resorted to even more radical verbal attacks, further dividing society, she said.

Additional reporting by Sean Lin, Lee Hsin-fang and CNA

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