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Ex-president's son to become Kaohsiung city councilor

2010/11/27 23:05:07

Taipei, Nov. 27 (CNA) Chen Chih-chung, the son of formerPresident Chen Shui-bian, won his first election bid Saturday andwill become a member of the Kaohsiung City Council.

He came in first place in his electoral distric with 32,947votes.

Chen contributed the success to his voters and said that he willfollow the steps of his father, who is now in prison on corruptioncharges, by insisting that Taiwan and China are two separatecountries.

The area governed by the city government will expand in Decemberto include nearby Kaohsiung County.

Chen scored a victory after he withdrew his membership from theDemocratic Progressive Party (DPP) in June and ran as an independentcandidate.

He said that he left DPP to help maintain harmony within theparty, which was split over corruption and money-laundering chargeshe and his parents are facing.

The 31-year-old and his wife had moved to Kaohsiung partly toavoid the media glare in Taipei and sought comfort among residents inthe pan-green stronghold in southern Taiwan, where he decided to runfor a seat in the new expanded city council.

When preparing for his campaign, he was said to have called on aprostitute by a tabloid magazine in July. He filed libel lawsuitsagainst the weekly and a rival politician but a district court ruledagainst him in both cases just days before the election.

In a money-laundering case, Chen was senteced by a higher courtin June to 14 months in prison and fined NT$30million (US$937,500).His appeal is pending in the Supreme Court.

Chen registered as an independent candidate in the city's 10thelectoral district including Siaogang and Cianjhen areas, runningagainst 14 other candidates-four from the Kuomintang (KMT), four DPPnominees and six others.

Ten Council seats are reserved for this district, including twowomen as required by law.

(By Nancy Liu)