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KMT chairmanship aspirant: person needed in crisis

2017/01/29 13:43:28

Former KMT Vice Chairman Steve Chan (front left)

Taipei, Jan. 29 (CNA) Steve Chan (詹啟賢), one of five aspirants to the chairmanship of the opposition Kuomintang (KMT), touted himself Sunday as the person the party needs now, at a time when it is struggling with financial woes.

Chan, a former KMT vice chairman, made the remarks when asked during a visit to the Jenn Lann Temple in Taichung's Dajia District in central Taiwan the reason for his seeking the post.

The Dajia Jenn Lann Temple is a temple to Matsu, goddess of the sea, who is widely worshiped in Taiwanese society.

Chan said the KMT is in a plight that threatens its existence.

With an entrepreneurial mind, he is experienced in consolidating a shaky company and making it stronger, the chairman hopeful said, citing an example of the Adimmune Corp., the only human vaccine manufacturer in Taiwan, which Chan succeeded in saving from chronic deficits after he took over the job as chairman of the listed company in 2008.

If elected, he will make the KMT into a political party close to Taiwanese society and let society re-embrace the party with open arms, Chan said.

In the KMT's chairmanship election on May 20, the 68-year-old Chan will face incumbent KMT Chairwoman Hung Hsiu-chu (洪秀柱), former Vice President Wu Den-yih (吳敦義), incumbent KMT Vice Chairman Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌), and former president of Taipei Agricultural Products Marketing Corp. Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜).

The KMT was beaten by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in both the presidential and legislative elections of Jan. 16, 2016. Due to the defeat, it lost the legislative majority it had held for more than six decades.

The veteran party fell into a deeper predicament after its assets were frozen pending completion of an investigation by the Ill-Gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee into its alleged ill-gotten gains.

The Ill-Gotten Party Assets Settlement Committee was set up by the Cabinet in August 2016 based on the Statute on Handling the Inappropriate Assets of Political Parties and Their Affiliated Organizations. The statute was enacted by the DPP-dominated Legislature in July that same year.

Under the law, most of the KMT's properties have been frozen pending investigations by the committee into the party's assets.

(By Hau Hsueh-ching and Elizabeth Hsu)
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