The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and the Taiwan Solidarity Union (TSU), as well as the chairman of the People First Party (PFP), have said they will not attend the National Day ceremony in front of the Presidential Office this morning.
DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) turned down the invitation from the Presidential Office and is scheduled to visit Chiayi County and Yunlin County for party activities.
DPP spokesperson Wang Min-sheng (王閔生) said Su declined the offer about one month ago, opting instead to visit party anniversary events in rural areas and inspect local communities.
Former DPP chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) is scheduled to visit Nantou County, where she is set to meet people from disadvantaged groups, Aborigines and foreign spouses while also inspecting local industries, said Hung Yao-fu (洪耀福), a spokesperson at Tsai’s office.
The pan-blue camp has in the past criticized pan-green camp politicians for skipping the national day ceremony and refusing to sing the national anthem, accusing them of showing disrespect toward the national flag and saying the mindset reflects the party’s contempt for the Republic of China.
In response to criticism from the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) about the DPP’s absence from the event, DPP Secretary-General Lin Hsi-yao (林錫耀) said the DPP did not want to engage in a war of words.
“We don’t know whether we should celebrate the national day with joy and happiness or with concern about the direction this country is heading. I would say that doing our job well will benefit this country more than attending the ceremony,” Lin said.
DPP Legislator Tsai Chi-chang (蔡其昌) said the DPP had always worked hard to safeguard Taiwan’s sovereignty, which was more important than meaningless ceremonial events.
TSU Chairman Huang Kun-huei (黃昆輝) declined the invitation and PFP Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜) also decided not to attend.