Green Party unveils campaign HQ

RESPECTFUL MANNER:Despite the presence of the DPP’s candidate for the Da-an by-election, the two contenders denied they would cooperate in the race


Sun, Feb 22, 2009 - Page 3

Green Party Taiwan (GPT) yesterday unveiled its campaign headquarters for Calvin Wen (溫炳原), who will represent the party and run in the legislative by-election for Taipei City’s Da-an District (大安) on March 28.

The party promised to engage in a constructive election process and bring green policies into the legislature.

“As a small party, GPT does not have a lot of resources, but we are willing to put ourselves out there at a time when the island’s two major parties are deadlocked [on many issues]. We call on the nation to respond [and ask for the] change that we really need,” Wen said.

Regarding the promotion of green policies, Wen said: “Rather than thinking that the land belongs to human beings, we should recognize that we belong to the land and politicians should invest more in sustainable industries.”

GPT will host weekly policy discussions at its headquarters until election day, where experts will be invited to speak to voters about topics ranging from organic agriculture, sustainable mass transportation to fair-trade goods, GPT Secretary-General Pan Han-shen (潘翰聲) said.

On a more political note, Wen said: “Democracy does not end with voting. It’s what politicians do after being elected that matters.”

There is an urgent need for change in the political climate so that political parties can engage in more fruitful discussion on topics including unification versus independence, with the acceptance that aside from “extremes,” there is a wide spectrum of solutions, Wen said.

GPT wishes to demonstrate that elections can be run in a friendly manner between “respectable opponents,” he said.

Attending the opening of the party’s headquarters, the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) candidate, Taipei City Councilor Chou Po-ya (周柏雅), agreed with Wen.

“Our country needs more people [like Wen] who can push for environmentally conscious policies,” Chou said, adding that Wen was an “outstanding person” and that he agreed with many of his political views.

The two denied they would run in the election together, however.

“Elections should be run in a respectful manner. Opponents lay out their views and ask voters to make the final decision. Interaction should not be interpreted as meaning that we’ll run together,” Wen said.