Gov't respects opposition; criticizes recall
By Adam Tyrsett Kuo, The China PostTAIPEI, Taiwan -- The president bears the greatest responsibility when it comes to national policies, and he must help build a more stable society, but the powers that the Constitution grants to the president and legislators must be upheld, Presidential Office spokesman Fan Chiang Tai-chi quoted President Ma Ying-jeou as saying, yesterday.
January 15, 2013, 12:21 am TWN
With regard to the Democratic Progressive Party's (DPP) recent demonstration, Fan Chiang said that the government has heard the people, and that their demands coincide with the administration's goals.
The president and the administration will humbly speak to the different sectors of society, help promote cross-party cooperation, and endeavor to reach societal consensus through rational discussions, in order to better Taiwan's circumstances, the spokesman said.
With regard to the DPP's proposals related to annuity reform, Fan Chiang said that under a democratic system, the opposition can submit statutory bills for deliberation, and that the Presidential Office both welcomes and respects its suggestions.
During the massive demonstration held on Jan. 13, DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang called for the dissolution of the “anti-reform” administration and impeachment of the president and ruling party lawmakers.
Impeachment of President Unlikely: Wang
Legislature Speaker Wang Jin-pyng said that a proposal to impeach the president may be brought before the Legislative Yuan, but that there is a low probability of such a proposal being passed, given the high threshold stipulated by the Constitution.
Wang added that demonstrations require demands; otherwise, there would be no focal point for protest. “The opposition has its demands, and we respect them.”
Executive Yuan Secretary-General Steven Chen said that all members of society have the freedom of speech, and that demands made by the opposition can be seen as suggestions.
Chen added that as soon as the current legislative session had begun, the Cabinet had made several proposals to the Legislature, and that there has been progress with regard to reform.
Reform is a long process, Chen said, adding that a solid foundation must be laid first in order to achieve optimal results.
Kuomintang (KMT) Secretary-General Tseng Yung-chuan said that the nation's economy has been recovering, and while people are fighting to improve it, the DPP chairman's proposal to impeach the president is a political ploy that runs against the expectations of the people.
KMT caucus whip Wu Yu-sheng said that despite the lack of clarity within the opposition's list of issues, it does not follow that the KMT shouldn't think about how to improve itself.
The difficulties of the nation should not be addressed through impeachment, Wu said, adding that such a measure would not help alleviate the situation.