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Ex-DPP head urges members to vote in party chair election

TAIPEI--The former chairwoman of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), who is running to lead the party again, urged party members Saturday to vote for her.

In a Facebook post, Tsai said she is running for the party leadership to transform the party so that Taiwanese people can once again have faith in political parties.

“Let's change this party and then move to changing Taiwan,” 57-year-old Tsai said on her Facebook page.

The DPP must become a party eyeing the future, she said.

Tsai's call came one day ahead of the DPP elections for a new party chair and officials, in which she is running against 54-year-old former Kaohsiung Magistrate Kuo Tai-lin.

Kuo is also campaigning on a platform focusing on change, and he proposes to strengthen the party's role to support candidates in elections by banning the party chair from running for public office.

Tsai is generally seen as the front runner in the election, following announcements in mid-April by current DPP Chairman Su Tseng-chang and former Premier Frank Hsieh of their decision not to run.

Tsai first became the DPP chairwoman in 2008, after the party's presidential candidate Hsieh, who teamed up with Su, lost the election earlier that year.

She resigned from the post after her own presidential campaign failed to help the DPP regain power in 2012.

Apart from the party chair, DPP members will vote for representatives to the party's national party congress, its top decision making body, along with heads and representatives of local chapters.

A total of 143,546 DPP members are eligible to vote in the elections, according to the party, which expects to announce the results at 7 p.m. after the polls close at 4 p.m.

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