The race to appoint the new legislative speaker is heating up as the legislative election campaign picks up speed, with the pan-green candidate, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Secretary-General Chang Chun-hsiung (張俊雄), lashing out at incumbent Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng (王金平) over "black gold" politics. \nTwo days ago a local Chinese-language daily printed interviews with Chang and Wang about their outlook for their election campaigns. While Wang attacked Chang's performance as premier during the disputes over the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant, Chang hinted that Wang, as legislative speaker, had offered protection for "black gold lawmakers." \nChang said that, during the past two legislative terms, the Legislative Yuan has resisted the courts' requests to arrest lawmakers who had broken laws. \nHe added that the legislature even helped certain lawmakers who have been banned from travelling abroad to leave the country during the legislative recess and to avoid arrest. \nBut according to the Legislative Yuan, only one request for the arrest of a lawmaker was received during Wang's term as speaker -- that of independent lawmaker Su Yin-kuei (蘇盈貴). \nThe court's request was delivered to the legislature's Procedure Committee, and the committee resolved to simply ignore the request, the legislature said yesterday. \nFurther, according to the legislature, when a lawmaker who has been banned from international travel wants to make a request to the court or the Ministry of Finance for permission to temporarily leave the country, the lawmaker has to contact the Legislative Yuan's secretariat for help with necessary administrative procedures. The legislative speaker's office is not informed of the request. The request goes no further than a copy being sent to the office of the secretary-general of the Legislative Yuan. \nBut the pan-green camp said yesterday that it was questionable whether the legislative speaker would really know nothing about lawmakers requesting temporary suspension of a travel ban. \n"If the legislative speaker did not approve of the request, will the secretariat be bold enough to approve the request on its own?" DPP caucus whip Tsai Huang-liang (蔡煌瑯) asked, citing fugitive former legislator Wu Tze-yuan (伍澤元) as an example. \nWu had asked the legislature to help him with a request for a temporary suspension of his travel ban at the end of 2001, but he never returned. Wu is now believed to be hiding in China.
VOTERS’ CHOICE: The DPP’s Chen and independent candidate Huang conceded defeat before 7:20pm, with Chiang pledging to remain humble and do his best Legislator Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安) yesterday won the Taipei mayoral election, with the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) candidate defeating the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) pick, former minister of health and welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中), and former Taipei deputy mayor Vivian Huang (黃珊珊), an independent. After polling stations closed at 4pm, the Taipei Election Commission issued a preliminary estimate that voter turnout in the city was about 64 percent, slightly lower than in 2018. Chiang, 43, is to be the youngest Taipei mayor ever, with the KMT regaining the capital after eight years. Chen had an exceptionally high national approval rating when he was head
A naval landing craft on Thursday sank near Kinmen County after wet weather and rough seas flooded its cabin, the Naval Fleet Command said. The vessel, called Landing Craft Mechanized 1326, had completed transport and replenishment missions in the county and was returning to Taiwan proper when surging waves flooded the cabin, the navy said in a statement. The craft’s five crew members tried to bail out the water to no avail, the Navy said. The landing craft eventually sank off Kinmen’s Liaoluo Bay (料羅灣) at 5:18pm, although all crew members rescued, it said, adding that the precise cause of the sinking
FAMILY BACKGROUND: Chiang was effective in running a cautious campaign to avoid making mistakes, waiting for other candidates to slip up, an analyst said Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Taipei Mayor-elect Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安) stood out among his rivals due to his energy, his die-hard supporters and his relative openness to discuss issues such as same-sex marriage, a political analyst said yesterday. Chiang’s campaign was also aided by his family’s background in politics, which helped him garner greater support in Taipei where there is a large KMT base, said the analyst, who chose to remain anonymous. “Chiang is also not a typical KMT member when it comes to certain issues, such as gay marriage, and his more open stance widened his support base — particularly among young
First-time politician Mai Yamada’s (山田摩衣) Japanese name has attracted attention in Chinese-language media after her win in the New Taipei City Council election on Saturday. Born to a Taiwanese mother and Japanese father, the 32-year-old Taiwanese-Japanese stood out after becoming one of nine elected city councilors in Banciao District (板橋) in the nation’s local government elections on Saturday. Although she has a Japanese name, she grew up and was educated in Taiwan, Yamada said, adding that “Taiwan is my home.” Before running for local government, Yamada, who speaks fluent Japanese and English, was Legislative Speaker You Si-kun’s (游錫堃) secretary. She has been involved in