Tainan City Councilor Lu Kun-fu (盧崑福) of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) yesterday sparked further controversy when he echoed remarks by KMT caucus whip Alex Fai (費鴻泰) that Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung (陳時中) should be executed for an increase in domestic COVID-19 cases.
Chen heads the Central Epidemic Command Center.
Lu at a question-and-answer session at the Tainan City Council said that a lapse in disease prevention measures at China Airlines, which has led to a cluster infection, could have been controlled.
However, as the airline’s pilots were allowed a shortened quarantine period of three days and were placed in a hotel with other guests, the local outbreak began, Lu said.
“Is it not Chen who is responsible for permitting this? It is right to have him executed,” Lu said, using the term qiangbi (槍斃), which Fai also used, meaning execution by firing squad.
Fai stirred up a firestorm on Monday at a KMT news conference, saying “Chen should be qiangbi” for negligence and the policy of allowing a shortened quarantine period for China Airlines pilots.
When told of Fai’s remark, Chen at the time said: “We are in this together to fight the pandemic, and to hear that is a bit too much ... but we will accept his criticism.”
However, Fai’s remarks sparked public anger, as people left messages on his Facebook page, with comments including: “Fai is still living in the White Terror era, thinking he can order summary executions of opposition party members,” and “Fai has reminded again how many innocent people were executed under the KMT’s authoritarian rule in the old days.”
Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) spokeswoman Chien Shu-pei (簡舒培) said the DPP condemns Fai for speaking and acting on behalf of China.
“We demand that Fai apologize and resign from his legislative caucus whip position,” Chien said.
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