The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) defended itself yesterday after a former DPP official said DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) was being influenced by supporters of former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) within the party and that the party would not move forward until those people left.
“DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen has been kidnapped by a number of ‘A-bians’ [the former president’s nickname]. The DPP will not be able revive its spirit if those people do not leave the party,” Chen Fang-ming (陳芳明), former director of the party’s culture and information department, told the Chinese-language China Times on Sunday.
Chen Fang-ming is chairman of the Graduate Institute of Taiwanese Literature at National Chengchi University.
He said the party should cleanse itself by selecting young and idealistic people to stand in this year’s city mayor and county commissioner elections and allow younger people to lead.
Chen said the alleged corruption and money-laundering scandals involving Chen Shui-bian have seriously jeopardized the party, but that he did not see the party reforming itself.
Chen Fang-ming asked: “Did the party really respond to the A-bian crisis or offer any measures to reform itself?”
Chen Fang-ming said Tsai Ing-wen was an ideal candidate, but that she could not sustain the party by herself.
“Tsai does not have enough power to control the party, but a number of ‘A-bians’ have tried to control her,” Chen said.
Approached for comment, Tsai said people have different opinions about the DPP, adding that the party was diverse and that she would not be controlled by one voice.
DPP caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘) said Chen Fang-ming’s remarks were biased.
Chen Fang-ming left DPP headquarters long ago and he did not really understand the way the party worked now, Ker said.
DPP Legislator Yu Jan-daw (余政道) said he agreed with Chen Fang-ming’s remarks, but he was confused about who the “A-bians” in the party were.
Yu said people had supported the party because it had a reputation of opposing corruption and the party must recover that reputation.
“What or who are these ‘A-bians?’” former vice president Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) asked when approached for comment.