Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) chairperson candidate Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱) yesterday said it was “heart-wrenching” to see that more than half of Taiwan’s youth lean toward independence, while rival Apollo Chen (陳學聖) called for a “grand debate” with the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) on transitional justice next year.
The KMT held the second policy presentation for its four chairperson candidates yesterday.
Cross-strait relations, the KMT’s “historical value,” as opposed to transitional justice, and party assets were some of the topics discussed.
Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei Times
Hung cited a recent survey conducted by the Chinese-language United Daily News that found 36 percent of people in the nation support Taiwanese independence — with 19 percent supporting immediate independence and 17 percent supporting independence after first maintaining the “status quo” — and among those aged between 20 and 29, more than 50 percent support independence, with 29 percent supporting immediate independence and 25 percent supporting eventual independence.
“This result is heart-wrenching and our party’s misery. Our party has always viewed safeguarding the Republic of China [ROC] as its responsibility, but what is it that we have protected in the end?” Hung said.
“Mainstream public opinion is still for maintaining the ‘status quo’ [with 46 percent support in the survey]. What is the ‘status quo’? Our Constitution states the sovereignty of the ROC includes China,” she said. “If there are people pursuing independence and separatism, as responsible politicians we should tell them what the consequences of choosing a different path are.”
Hung also said that if president-elect Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) — “who has a different outlook for the nation’s future from ours” — sincerely wishes to maintain the “status quo,” she should abrogate the DPP’s Taiwanese independence platform and all other related resolutions.
Chen proposed holding a “grand debate on history and transitional justice” next year, “the 30th anniversary of the lifting of martial law,” adding that the KMT also has the right to interpret transitional justice and should champion the party’s historical values.
“The KMT made a contribution through the fact that party alternations have become a reality in the nation,” he said.
“Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石) and [former president] Chiang Ching-kuo (蔣經國) might have been authoritarian, but the election of [Chiang Ching-kuo’s son] John Chiang (蔣孝嚴) and [John Chiang’s son] Chiang Wan-an (蔣萬安) as lawmakers could be viewed as the KMT’s own transitional justice,” he added.
He said the 319 shooting incident in 2004, in which a bullet grazed then-president Chen Shui-bian’s (陳水扁) stomach while another hit then-vice president Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) in the knee on the eve of the 2004 presidential election, and the corruption rumor that cost then-KMT-nominated Kaohsiung mayoral candidate Huang Chun-ying (黃俊英) the election in 2006 “should also be counted as transitional justice issues that need to be examined.”
Taipei City Councilor Lee Hsin (李新) contended that, while the DPP has rallied against the KMT’s assets, the foundations established by politicians, “which are the white gloves [for politicians’ money],” have been largely overlooked.
“Tsai, Chen Shui-bian and other DPP politicians all have their own foundations, which are their own ‘private coffers,’” Lee said.
Lee seemed to turn against his own comrades, demanding that President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) apologize before he leaves office and attacking Hung’s “self-deceiving” cross-strait stance that he said caused serious damage to the KMT.
Acting Chairperson Huang Min-hui (黃敏惠) said her cross-strait policy would be in line with the Constitution and the party’s political platform and, if elected as chairperson, she would make sure that the DPP-led government, including the Presidential Office, the National Security Council, the Mainland Affairs Council and the Straits Exchange Foundation, is closely overseen.
“If the DPP administration’s cross-strait policies damage people’s welfare, the KMT would not sit idly by,” she said.
“We would initiate the ‘KMT-Chinese Communist Party Platform’ and contain, or even correct, the damage,” she added.
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
LUCKY DATE: The man picked the 10th ‘Super Red Envelope’ in a lottery store in Taoyuan’s Jhongli because he broke up with his girlfriend on Jan. 10 A man who recently broke up with his girlfriend won a NT$1 million (US$32,929) prize in the “NT$20 million Super Red Envelope” lottery after picking a card based on the date of their breakup, Taiwan Lottery Co said yesterday. The man, in his 20s, bought the 10th ticket at a lottery store in Taoyuan’s Jhongli District (中壢), because he broke up with his girlfriend on Jan. 10, the store owner told the lottery company. The “Super Red Envelope” lottery was a limited offering by the company during the Lunar New Year holiday, which ended yesterday. The cards, which cost NT$2,000 each, came with
TOURISM BOOST: The transportation system could help attract more visitors to the area, as the line is to connect multiple cultural sites, a city councilor said Residents in New Taipei City’s Ankeng District (安坑) said the local light rail system might have a positive influence, but raised questions about its practicality. The Ankeng light rail system, which is to commence operations after the Lunar New Year holiday, would cut travel time for commuters from Ankeng to downtown Taipei or New Taipei City by 15 to 20 minutes, the city government said. According to the initial plan, there would be one train every 15 minutes during peak time and additional interval trains would run between the densely populated Ankang Station (安康) and Shisizhang Station (十 四張). To encourage people to
CHAMPION TREES: The team used light detection and ranging imaging to locate the tree, and found that it measured a height of 84.1m and had a girth of 8.5m A team committed to finding the tallest trees in the nation yesterday said that an 84.1m tall Taiwania cryptomerioides tree had been named the tallest tree in Taiwan and East Asia. The Taiwan Champion Trees, a team consisting of researchers from the Council of Agriculture’s Taiwan Forestry Research Institute and National Cheng Kung University (NCKU), in June last year used light detection and ranging (LiDAR) imaging to find the giant tree, numbered 55214, upstream of the Daan River (大安溪). A 20-member expedition team led by Rebecca Hsu (徐嘉君), an assistant researcher at the Taiwan Forestry Research Institute, set out to find the