The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) said yesterday it would develop closer ties with grassroots and civic movements in an attempt to reform the party and get closer to mainstream public opinion.
Speaking after a meeting of the DPP’s Central Standing Committee held to discuss the party’s direction over the next year, DPP Chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) called this year the party’s “social movement year,” saying that only by bringing in more “social power” could the party revive itself and perform well in the city mayor and county commissioner elections scheduled for the end of this year.
Citing media reports interpreting the party’s emphasis on social movements as a return to the party of “street protests,” Tsai said such views were narrow and misleading.
“A social movement is not a street movement,” she said.
Tsai said the party wanted to be a strong opposition to monitor the government’s performance and better connect with grassroots and civic organizations.
The party should forge links with civic groups to strengthen its ideals and social responsibility, consult academics to strengthen its analysis capabilities and listen to the public so it could better represent mainstream opinion, she said.
The meeting concluded that the party would have three priorities this year: linking with civic movements, helping people deal with the economic downturn and rising unemployment, and winning the mayoral and county commissioner elections, Tsai said.
Cheng Wen-tsang (鄭文燦), a party spokesman, said the party would form several consultation committees to integrate opinions on different matters, including a first-tier election policy committee, a social development committee, a policy-making committee, a foreign affairs committee, a second-tier women’s committee, youth, Aborigine and Hakka committees, as well as a China policy committee.
To counter the government’s China-leaning polices, Tsai said the committee would form an “all citizens safeguard Taiwan movement,” which would not only protect Taiwan’s sovereignty, but also its culture, industry and products.
Tsai renewed her invitation to President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) to attend the national civic affairs conference the party will hold later this month, saying the party hoped Ma could attend and listen to the real voices of the public, which would be helpful for him in ruling the country — especially when delegates discuss economic issues.
ONGOING PROBE: A former Military Intelligence Bureau colonel, major general and another colonel, as well as five other people, have been questioned by prosecutors The Taipei District Court yesterday ordered that a retired colonel from the Military Intelligence Bureau (MIB) calling himself Taiwan’s “first special agent” be detained and held incommunicado as part of an ongoing investigation into espionage allegations targeting at least three former bureau officials. The Taipei District Prosecutors’ Office was seeking to detain former MIB colonel Chang Chao-jan (張超然) over his alleged involvement in introducing retired agents to Chinese national security authorities and passing confidential documents to China. Chang’s actions, if proven, would contravene the National Security Act (國家安全法), which carries a prison term of three to 10 years, and the National Intelligence
The US House of Representatives’ China Task Force, launched by Republicans earlier this year, yesterday proposed the China task force act, a package of 137 pieces of legislation, seven of which involve Taiwan, in the hope of getting it passed before the 117th US Congress convenes on Jan. 3. The act encompasses a wide range of issues, including combatting Beijing’s influence around the globe, establishing the US’ dominance in determining 5G network standards and means for bringing UN members to task for abusing their influence within the UN system. The seven acts involving Taiwan address concerns such as the Taiwan Assurance Act
Chinese health authorities investigating a COVID-19 outbreak have said that they discovered live coronavirus on frozen food packaging, a finding that suggests the virus can survive in cold supply chains. The Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention on Saturday said that it had found traces of live COVID-19 on the outer packaging of frozen cod in the eastern city of Qingdao, marking the first time that live coronavirus has been detected on the outside of refrigerated goods. Researchers were investigating the source of a cluster of cases linked to a hospital in Qingdao. Genetic traces had previously been found in samples of
A Chinese soldier apprehended earlier this week by the Indian Army after he strayed across a tense de facto border was on Tuesday night handed back to China, an Indian government source in New Delhi said yesterday. The Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) soldier had on Monday been captured in the Demchok area of eastern Ladakh, the Indian Army said in a statement. The Chinese military also released a statement, saying that Corporal Wang Yalong was handed over early yesterday. New Delhi on Monday said that it had detained Wang after he crossed into Indian-controlled territory, while China announced that Wang had gotten