The Ministry of Culture yesterday scrapped the Public Television Service’s (PTS, 公視) “international video platform” after it sparked controversy following reports that the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) tried to use the platform as a mouthpiece and interfere with its personnel plans.
The ministry in a statement thanked the PTS board — which on Monday voted 11-4 to pass a pilot project to develop an “international communication digital plan” — for its support.
However, the ministry said that to prevent the controversy from spreading, it has terminated the international video platform commission following a careful and comprehensive assessment.
Photo: Chung Chih-kai, Taipei Times
The direction of the ministry’s policy in promoting the project would not change, it said, adding that it would continue to seek advice from various circles and find the best way to execute the project.
Executive Yuan spokesman Ting Yi-ming (丁怡銘) said that the Executive Yuan respects the ministry’s decision, as well as the PTS’ independence.
The Executive Yuan would not interfere with the production and broadcasting of PTS programs, he said.
Photo: Chen Yu-hsun, Taipei Times
As there are differing opinions about the ministry commission within PTS, the Executive Yuan respects PTS’ opinion, he said.
Board member Hsu Jui-hsi (徐瑞希) yesterday said that she would resign from the PTS board in protest of the ministry’s decision to dissolve the commission.
She saw a detailed version of the international video platform plan at an extraordinary board meeting on Monday, Hsu said.
Although some of the political vocabulary in the proposal was not handled well, she believed that PTS was capable of executing the project, Hsu added.
She believed that it could be left to the new board and management team to make adjustments, which is why she had voted in favor of the project, she said.
The ministry had previously said that it respects the board’s decision, she said, accusing the ministry of contradicting itself.
PTS said it respects Hsu’s decision to resign from the board.
The ministry has terminated the application for the case, it said, calling for rational discussion among various groups on how an international video platform could be planned.
At Monday’s board meeting, three PTS executives — PTS president Tsao Wen-chieh (曹文傑), executive vice president Hsieh Tsui-yu (謝翠玉) and news department manager Su Chi-chen (蘇啟禎) — tendered their resignations.
PTS yesterday said planning department manager Hsu Chiu-hua (徐秋華) would serve as acting president from Saturday until a president is selected and the handover has been completed.
The New Power Party (NPP) said that the ministry should give a comprehensive briefing to lawmakers on the legislature’s Education and Culture Committee about controversies over its proposed creation of the international video platform, even though it has canceled the project.
NPP Chairman Hsu Yung-ming (徐永明) told a news conference in Taipei that controversies surrounding the project would not go away simply because the ministry has terminated it.
The government is obligated to tell lawmakers what it plans to do with the NT$5.8 billion (US$196.6 million) budget that had been earmarked for the platform, Hsu said.
“The DPP should realize that it cannot equate public media with state-controlled media. PTS is a public media outlet, which is owned by the public, and should maintain its independence,” he said.
“It should not yield to the government’s every demand only because it receives funding from the ministry,” he added.
Additional reporting by Shelley Shan and Lin Nan-ku
INVASION: Former Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe said: ‘A Taiwan emergency is a Japanese emergency, and therefore an emergency for the Japan-US alliance’ Japan and the US could not stand by if China attacked Taiwan, and Beijing needs to understand this, former Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe said yesterday. Speaking virtually to a forum organized by Taiwanese think tank the Institute for National Policy Research, Abe said that the Senkaku Islands — known as the Diaoyutai Islands (釣魚台) in Taiwan — the Sakishima Islands and Yonaguni Island are only about 100km from Taiwan. An invasion of Taiwan would be a grave danger to Japan, he said. “A Taiwan emergency is a Japanese emergency, and therefore an emergency for the Japan-US alliance. People in Beijing, [Chinese] President
‘BADGE OF HONOR’: Lithuanian lawmaker Dovile Sakaliene, who is on China’s travel ban list, said delegation members joked that they would be joining her on it soon A delegation led by the chairman of the Lithuanian Parliamentary Group for Relations with Taiwan yesterday arrived in Taipei to participate in a conference on democracy later this week. The group, led by Matas Maldeikis, a Lithuanian lawmaker and an outspoken critic of China, touched down at Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport at 6:18am yesterday. Maldeikis said at the airport that he expected the trip to enhance understanding between Taiwan and Lithuania after cooperation between the two sides took a big step forward this past year. “This trip will be another step in understanding each other because we are dealing with the same challenges,”
GET A BOOST: After considering the potential for local outbreaks amid an increase in cases abroad, a committee recommended adolescents receive their second shots The level 2 COVID-19 alert is to be extended until Dec. 13, the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) announced yesterday, as it advised people in six high-risk groups to receive a COVID-19 vaccine booster shot. It also recommended that adolescents aged 12 to 17 who had a first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine receive a second shot. Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), who heads the center, said that the nationwide level 2 alert would remain in place for two more weeks from today. Chen said that during New Year’s events eating and drinking might be allowed in designated areas, while
‘HISTORIC’: The passage of the resolution by both chambers of the French parliament shows their concrete support for Taiwan’s global participation, the foreign ministry said The government yesterday thanked the French National Assembly for adopting a resolution on Monday in support of Taiwan’s international participation, following a similar resolution passed by the French Senate in May. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs praised the resolution’s passage as “historic” and as demonstrating the concrete support of both chambers of the French parliament for Taiwan’s participation in international affairs. Taiwan and France have shared a long-standing partnership characterized by a high level of trust, and based on the shared values of democracy, freedom and human rights, the ministry said. Passed on Monday in a 39-2 vote with three abstentions, the non-legally