Chamber of Commerce election ends in dispute
By Ted Chen, The China Post
December 18, 2013, 12:08 am TWN
TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The General Chamber of Commerce of the R.O.C. (ROCCOC, 全國商業總會) yesterday held the first members' meeting of its ninth assembly, at which a routine election of the chamber's board concluded without resolution.
The event saw unprecedented attendance by members, with high-ranking government department heads and Legislative Yuan Speaker Wang Jin-pyng taking the podium to commend the organization's efforts in promoting Taiwan's business endeavors. Throughout the meeting, ROCCOC leaders reviewed this year's progress and passed resolutions to set the chamber's goals and list of issues to work toward for next year, in addition to auditing a number of internal organizational matters. During his address, Wang stated that contrary to media reports, decisions rendered at the Legislative Yuan are not the product of lobbying and back-room deals, and that the legislative branch of government remains functional and continues to pass numerous resolutions, contrary to reports of it being mired in political struggle.
Board Election Disputed
Disputes, however, arose during the organization's board elections that took place on the same occasion. Contrary to expectations, Wang Ying-jieh (王應傑), convener of the ROCCOC Board of Directors, did not receive enough votes to retain his post.
According to Wang Ying-jieh, board election procedures had 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, with members voting for 51 seats on the Board of Directors and 17 seats on the Board of Supervisors.
Citing this discrepancy and the consequent loss of integrity in the election, Wang Ying-jieh stated that an additional board election was required. In addition, none of the 600 ballots handed out to members were affixed with his seal in accordance with procedural stipulations, said Wang Ying-jieh. Vowing to pursue legal recourse, Wang promised to submit an appeal to the Ministry of the Interior within two weeks.
Meanwhile, Lai Chang-yi, (賴正鎰), chairman of the Shining Group (鄉林), a construction and properties development company, was elected as ROCCOC chairman in line with expectations.
Incidentally, a few members had expressed their wishes to take the podium prior to the election, but their appeals were quelled by outgoing ROCCOC Chairman Chang Pen-tsao (張平沼) and drowned out by a majority of attendees, who urged for proceedings to continue as previously scheduled and without delay.
Outgoing ROCCOC Chairman Chang Pen-tsao stated that he will attempt to mediate the dispute resulting from the flawed election, and urged Lai Chang-yi to adopt a softer stance as well as personally pay a respectful visit to “the person that did not get elected as expected.” Lai asserted that the process took place well within “the rules of the game,” and that prior to the change of the number of board seats, board members had been informed of, and consented to, the move.
Newly elected ROCCOC Chairman Lai Chang-yi (賴正鎰) comments that elections are contests between gentlemen, and that those who did not receive enough votes to retain their posts ...