Taipei, Nov. 27 (CNA) William Lai, a medical doctor-turnedpolitician, declared victory Saturday in the soon-to-be createdspecial municipality of Tainan City, helping the oppositionDemocratic Progressive Party keep its tight grip on one of its moststable strongholds.
According to TV vote counts, the Harvard-educated Lai, 51, had a20-point lead over his Kuomintang (KMT) opponent Kuo Tien-tsai in theconstituency, which will incorporate the existing administrativedistricts of Tainan City and Tainan County when it becomes a specialmunicipality on Dec. 25.
The mayoral race in Tainan was given less media attention thanthose in the other four municipalities because it was widely seen asa sure victory for Lai.
With a combined population of just 1.87 million, Tainan is alsothe smallest of five municipalities where mayoral and councilelections were held ealier in the day.
Tainan County, which is heavily populated by farmers andfishermen, has been held by the DPP since 1993, and Tainan City hasbeen held by the party since 1997.
Lai who has been rated by the Taipei-based Citizen Congress Watchas the best lawmaker four times in a row since he became a member ofthe legislature in 1999.
Lai served as the DPP legislative caucus whip and is now one ofthe conveners on the Legislature's Social Welfare and EnvironmentalHygiene Committee and the Judiciary and Organic Laws and StatutesCommittee.
The newly elected mayor has pledged to promote the development ofmedical tourism, cultural and creative industries, and theestablishment of a national museum in the new municipality.
(By Alex Jiang)