Mongolian-Tibetan commission might be merged: minister

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

Tue, Jun 21, 2016 - Page 3

Mongolian and Tibetan Affairs Commission Minister Lin Mei-chu (林美珠) yesterday said the commission will likely move toward merging with another ministry.

Lin made the remark in her first report to the Legislative Yuan since assuming office, as she fielded questions from lawmakers on the controversial issue of whether the commission should be dissolved or its duties merged into other ministries.

People First Party Legislator Chen Yi-chieh (陳怡潔) said public opinion favored dissolution of the commission.

Chen added that Lin’s report sounded “as if she was preparing to finish the tasks of the last chairperson,” so she asked Lin to comment on the issue.

“After so many years of discussion, there is already a certain consensus among political parties, and that is frankly speaking, with the current powers, functions and organization of the commission, it lacks resources to become a ministry on its own,” Lin said.

“Moving toward dissolving [the commission] or merging [with other agencies] is in line with the government’s policy directions, so we are not against it,” she added.

Whether the commission is dissolved or merged, the government must continue to handle Mongolian and Tibetan affairs, including academic, cultural, economic and professional personnel issues, Lin said.

When Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Huang Chao-shun (黃昭順) asked which ministry the commission should be merged with and when, Lin said more discussion was needed to clarify what affairs would remain the key focus before a reorganization, adding that the timing was not up to the commission.

Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Lee Chun-yi (李俊俋) said reorganizing the commission would touch upon issues such as political refugees from Tibet and cultural exchanges, so comprehensive planning is needed before the commission is dissolved or merged with another government agency.