Tainan postpones Sun Yat-sen statue's relocation
The China Post news staffTainan has put off moving a bronze statue of Sun Yat-sen, the founding father of the Republic of China, amid a standoff between two camps with differing views on the plan.
August 26, 2013, 11:08 am TWN
The city's government recently adopted a plan to move the statue from the Tang Teh-chang Memorial Park to the campus of an elementary school at the suggestion of a committee supervising heritage and historical sites in the city.
But city council members and their supporters from the ruling Kuomintang (KMT) have voiced opposition to the move. They have stood guard at the site protecting Sun's statue.
A phrase on the statue reads “天下為公” (tian xia wei gong), which means “All things under the sky shared by the public” and is said to advocate Sun's democratic thoughts. One of Sun's granddaughters has sent her thanks to those safeguarding the statue, as indicated in a giant sign board near it.
The opposition Democratic Progressive Party, however, has rallied its supporters to back the municipal government's plan to move the statue.
They said that the park is now dedicated to Tang Teh-chang, a victim of the “228 Incident,” a military crackdown that began Feb. 28, 1947.
The city government announced yesterday the postponement of the project to move the statue due to the conflict and stalemate. It already dismantled the scaffolding erected earlier to transplant the monument.
The KMT council members and other supporters said they will continue guarding the statue around the clock until the city government makes a formal pledge to scrap the plan.
The city issued a statement stressing that moving the statue is not connected with politics or ideology. It explained that moving the statue, placed in its current location decades earlier, is purely based on public safety considerations.
But the city government made no promise to suspend the transplant plan.
Sun Yat-sen was a renowned Chinese revolutionary leader who founded the KMT and overthrew the Qing Dynasty to end centuries of imperial rule in China. He established the R.O.C., the first democratic republic in Asia, in 1911.