The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Central Standing Committee yesterday unanimously passed a resolution urging Kaohsiung voters to exercise their right to vote in Saturday’s recall election of Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜).
Regardless of whether they support or oppose the recall, Kaohsiung residents should vote this weekend, the resolution says.
The resolution, proposed by committee member and DPP Legislator Shen Fa-hui (沈發惠), was passed at a meeting presided over by President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文), who on May 20 resumed leadership of the party following her second inauguration.
Photo: Wang Yi-sung, Taipei Times
The Constitution guarantees the right to vote and to remove an official from office, the resolution says, adding that as a democratic nation, Taiwan prides itself on its democratic elections — a basic right enjoyed by Taiwanese.
Thanks to the hard work of Kaohsiung’s residents, a recall proposal surpassed a signature threshold and led to the first-ever recall vote of a mayor or county commissioner, it says.
This is a milestone in the history of Taiwan’s democracy and Kaohsiung’s residents have made history, it adds.
Removing an official from office is a basic right of the public and voting is the best expression of civil rights, the resolution says.
Regarding the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) calling on people not to vote, but rather to observe the process, the resolution says the DPP believes that this suppresses the development of the nation’s democratic politics and sets the worst example for a freedom that Taiwan has long been proud of.
The DPP asks that its Kaohsiung chapter work toward safeguarding the ability of Kaohsiung’s residents to exercise their civil rights, it says.
Central and local election agencies should handle the voting process and count the ballots, while relevant government agencies should investigate any behavior that hinders voting to ensure Kaohsiung’s residents can safely exercise their right, it adds.
Separately yesterday, Vice Premier Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁), who in 2018 ran against Han for mayor, said that as a native of Kaohsiung, he would return to the city to cast his ballot in the recall election.
As part of the process of putting democracy into practice, voting holds an important meaning, Chen said, adding that people do not vote, others decide for them.
All Kaohsiung residents should vote, regardless of the outcome they support, so that they can express their opinion, he said.
Asked to which side he is inclined to vote, Chen said that the opinions of the city’s residents should be respected.
Resident should decide matters concerning Kaohsiung, he said.
Asked about criticism from Han supporters and a lawsuit over buses being arranged for university students to return to Kaohsiung this weekend, Chen said that Taiwan is a mature, democratic nation and that everyone’s opinion, especially when it comes to voting, should be respected.
Influencing elections through methods such as bullying or violence are illegal, he said, adding that democratic values should be respected.
Asked about reports that some residents have not received their notice to vote and whether it was evidence of an attempt to prevent people from voting, Chen said that he could not speculate on the cause of the alleged incidents.
People exercising their civil rights should be protected by law, he said.
FATAL FIRE: The health department is trying to contact the inspector who visited the site of the illegal nursing home to ask why they did not advise follow-up checks The Taipei City Government yesterday said that a health department inspector last year had visited the site of a long-term care facility in Neihu District (內湖) after receiving a report questioning its status. A fire broke out at the facility on Tuesday afternoon, killing three people. The Taipei Fire Department said that it received a report about a fire on the first floor of a four-story residential building on Kangning Road Sec. 1 at 2:38pm on Tuesday, firefighters arrived at 2:43pm and the fire was put out by 3:07pm. The firefighters found three men in beds and rushed them to hospital for
THE CHINA CONNECTION: As Beijing’s aggression increases, so does Taiwanese consciousness, making a new constitution imperative, Hsu Wei-chun said If the nation is to ratify a new constitution, it must first end any illusions about the current document’s relevance to Taiwan, an academic told a forum in Taipei yesterday. For the constitutional revisionist movement to succeed, it needs public enthusiasm, the right timing and a clear plan of action, Chung Yuan Christian University associate professor Hsu Wei-chun (徐偉群) told attendees at the event titled “Imagining a New Constitution for a New Era,” which was organized by the National Taiwan University Graduate Student Association. The Constitution exists under the “one China” framework and has little relevance to Taiwan, Hsu said, adding that
Yuchi Township (魚池) fishers have appealed to the Nantou County Government for help in dealing with an invasive fish species in Sun Moon Lake (日月潭), where it has devastated the local ecosystem. Fishers at Sun Moon Lake have been using electrofishing in an attempt to eliminate the giant snakehead fish — found in Africa and Southeast Asia — but they have struggled to keep up with the growing population of the species, which breeds during September and October, the county government said on Monday. The county has contacted researchers at National Tsing Hua University, saying it hoped they could come up
Former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday urged Beijing to respect the median line of the Taiwan Strait by immediately stopping its military intimidation of Taiwan, as such actions would only hurt the feelings of Taiwanese. Beijing should immediately stop making military provocations against Taiwan, Ma wrote on Facebook after Chinese warplanes in the past week have made numerous forays across the median line that divides the Taiwan Strait. Although it has never officially acknowledged the median line, Beijing used to respect it, Ma said in response to comments on Monday by Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin (汪文斌), who said