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September 21, 2017

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Sean Lien to announce bid for Taipei mayor tomorrow

TAIPEI--Sean Lien, son of former Vice President Lien Chan and a member of the Kuomintang Central Committee, will announce formally on Feb. 24 his intention to run for mayor of Taipei, a KMT official said yesterday.

Lien will announce his bid at a press conference at Taipei Circle in the city's Tatung district, a stronghold of the pan-green camp where his family began its climb to prosperity, one of his close aides said.

Sean Lien will also highlight his vision for reviving the western part of Taipei through a series of development projects and conservation of cultural heritage, the aide said. Members of his team of consultants will also attend the press conference, according to the aide.

The ruling KMT will select its candidate for the Taipei mayoral election in accordance with its democratic procedures, said Fan Chiang Tai-chi, director of the KMT's Culture and Communication Committee.

The party will throw it full weight behind the selected candidate and is confident it can win the Taipei election, Fan Chiang said.

In addition to Lien, the other KMT hopefuls are legislators Tsai Cheng-yuan and Ting Shou-chung.

The KMT will complete the nomination process by the end of May but has not yet decided on the procedural format or the date of registration of its candidates, according to a KMT source.

These issues will be finalized after the party holds discussions with its Taipei mayoral hopefuls, the source said.

Incumbent Mayor Hau Lung-bin is not eligible for reelection because of a two-term limit. This leaves the Taipei race wide open and it is one of the most closely watched polls ahead of the seven-in-one elections in November.

Several members of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) have expressed interest in running for Taipei mayor, including former Vice President Annette Lu, attorney Wellington Koo, City Council Deputy Speaker Chou Po-ya, and lawmakers Hsu Tain-tsair and Pasuya Yao.

However, an outspoken independent hopeful, physician Ko Wen-je, has been tipped as a frontrunner, although he has not formally announced his bid or decided whether to join the DPP.

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