Public Construction Commission Minister Chen Chen-chuan (陳振川) and Council of Indigenous Peoples Minister Sun Ta-chuan (孫大川) will soon leave the Cabinet because they have opted to return to academia, Premier Jiang Yi-huah (江宜樺) confirmed yesterday.
Jiang said he could only approve resignations by academics and look for their replacements after the expiration of the period for which they were permitted to take leave from their universities to work for the government.
Chen is to teach in the department of civil engineering at National Taiwan University, while Sun will return to his position at National Chengchi University’s Graduate Institute of Taiwan Literature, both beginning next month.
Speaking by telephone, Chen said he was forced to resign from the position as a professor in the department in May last year when a four-year leave granted him by the university to work for the government expired.
Chen said he decided to stay in the Cabinet to complete work on post-Typhoon Morakot reconstruction, the planned restructuring of the commission and merger with the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, and plans to improve the quality and efficiency of public construction projects.
Because those tasks are about to be completed, Chen said he applied for a position at the department and the university approved his application in January.
Sun said he had told Jiang a long time ago that he planned to return to academia next month to continue his study of Aboriginal literature.
Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) is aware that Beijing’s treatment of Hong Kong has weakened any possible sentiment for a “one country, two systems” arrangement for Taiwan, and has instructed Chinese Communist Party (CCP) politburo member Wang Huning (王滬寧) to develop new ways of defining cross-strait relations, Japanese news magazine Nikkei Asia reported on Thursday. A former professor of international politics at Fu Dan University, Wang is expected to develop a dialogue that could serve as the foundation for cross-strait unification, and Xi plans to use the framework to support a fourth term as president, Nikkei Asia quoted an anonymous source
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