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Former ROCCOC chair rejects special election

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Chang Pen-tsao (張平沼), former chairman of the General Chamber of Commerce, R.O.C. (ROCCOC) on Sunday vowed to escalate contention efforts against last year's flawed board election for the chamber, while demanding that the Ministry of the Interior (MOI) return supervision duties of a forthcoming special election to the chamber's previous board of directors by the end of this month.

Last December the ROCCOC held an election for the chamber's ninth assembly that concluded without resolution due to irregularities in the balloting, and as a result the upcoming special election must be overseen by the chamber's eighth assembly, said Chang.

Chang also criticized the MOI's decision to appoint Wang Yo-ben (王友本), chairman of the Taipei Electrical Commercial Association (TECA), to serve as convener of the upcoming board special election on March 21. Chang stated that the MOI's decision is tantamount to dereliction of duty, as legal procedures dictate that the special election should be overseen by Wang Gwung-shiang (王光祥), who served as the chamber's chief of executive directors in its eighth assembly. Chang also mentioned that he may launch a campaign to impeach the MOI should the governing body turn a blind eye to the questionable election.

According to Wang Ying-jieh (王應傑), the former convener of the ROCCOC Board of Directors, the board's election procedures last December called for 45 seats on the Board of Directors and 17 seats on the Board of Supervisors. However, the procedures were changed on short notice and members voted for 51 seats on the Board of Directors and 17 seats on the Board of Supervisors.

Chang vowed to lead the chamber's previous cast of board directors in retaking control of the ROCCOC special election on March 21, ending the legally questionable tenure of the chamber's newly elected chairman, Lai Cheng-I (賴正鎰), who is also the proprietor of the land development company Shining Group (鄉林).

Meanwhile, Deputy Interior Minister Hsiao Chia-chi (蕭家淇) yesterday replied that the ministry has not finalized its approval for the chamber's upcoming special election and urged the two opposing factions led by Chang and Lai to resolve the dispute in an amicable fashion, while asserting that MOI's decisions conform to legal regulations.

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