Wang confirms he will help Lu's anti-poverty scheme

By Mo Yan-chih  /  STAFF REPORTER

Fri, Sep 08, 2006 - Page 3

Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) yesterday confirmed reports that Vice President Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) had invited him to promote a large-scale poverty alleviation program, and urged the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) to join the effort.

According to a story published in the Chinese-language newspaper the China Times, Lu met with Wang to seek his support for the "Sunshine Family" poverty alleviation program, which aims to provide a NT$10,000 (US$304) monthly subsidy to around 80,000 low-income families.

Wang denied allegations made in the newspaper report that there might have been some "political motive" behind the alleged collaboration between himself and Lu.

Wang said that Lu invited him to join her in the plan simply because he maintains close connections with Taiwan's religious sector.

"There are minority groups who desperately need help in Taiwan ? We should stand side by side with the people," Wang said yesterday while addressing the "future comes with retrospection" forum held by the KMT at the Taipei Youth Activity Center.

As the KMT has pledged to examine itself and push for party reform, Wang called on his party to "walk into the crowds" and "stand side by side with the people."

"In joining efforts to fight poverty we stand side by side with the people ? The KMT should support such a program," he added.

KMT Chairman Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) later expressed his support for the program, and said the KMT was willing to exchange ideas with the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) regarding the issue.

Ma said that the Taipei City Government already had a poverty alleviation program, which provided funds to low-income families, and that the city's program could be a reference for the government's program.