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Premier Chen denies rumors of resignation by year-end

Premier Sean Chen yesterday refuted rumors that he may be stepping down by the end of the year, stressing that the suggestions lack credibility.

He also said that he never submitted a resignation letter to President Ma Ying-jeou on the eve of the no-confidence vote initiated by the Democratic Progressive Party in late September. “I have the determination to accomplish everything to the best of my abilities everyday,” he said.

At an interpellation session yesterday, lawmakers fired questions at the premier about whether he would resign if the economy stimulus plan does not show progress within three months. Legislator Lin Shu-fen (林淑芬) said President Ma had proposed a three-month trial for Cabinet officials whereby they should resign after the trial's end if the economy had not improved, asking Chen: “Will you still be premier after two months?” Chen replied by saying that the president had never offered such a proposition and that it was only a suggestion put forth by some lawmakers.

Ting Shou-chung (丁守中) claimed that Chen had submitted a resignation letter to the Presidential Office before the no-confidence vote motion. To this Chen replied: “There is no such thing. This is an assumption that has no factual basis. People shouldn't believe these rumors.”

Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) yesterday lauded the premier, saying that Chen was the most suitable person for the job of strengthening Taiwan's economy as it is his professional expertise.

“Although Taiwan does not lack talent, we should cherish the professional talents we have,” he said. Hau added, “Toppling the Cabinet would wreak havoc on the government. Give Chen some time and put more faith in him.”

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