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Han recall petition reaches legal threshold: campaign leader

2019/10/11 19:58:28

Taipei, Oct. 11 (CNA) A petition to recall Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) has reached 300,000 signatures, surpassing the estimated legal threshold, recall movement leader Aaron Yin (尹立) told CNA Friday.

Yin, founder of the grassroots organization Wecare Kaohsiung, said that despite reaching their goal, the group would continue to collect signatures and build public support, which he described as essential to saving Kaohsiung from the stagnation it has suffered under Han's leadership.

Wecare Kaohsiung and its partners, including Citizens Mowing Action and the Taiwan Statebuilding Party, launched the recall petition at the end of June.

According to the Civil Servants Election and Recall Act, recalling an elected official is a three-step process in which petitioners must first submit a recall proposal bearing the signatures of 1 percent of voters within the original electoral district.

This is followed by submission of a petition containing the signatures of 10 percent of the voters. Finally, a poll must be held in which the official is recalled if at least 25 percent of eligible voters cast ballots in favor of recall and a simple majority prevails.

The recall groups have estimated that based on Kaohsiung's population of 2.28 million, the petition would require at least 228,000 signatures to gain legal credence, although the groups set a goal of 300,000 in case some of the signatures are later declared invalid.

The law states that an elected official must serve one year before a proposal of recall can be filed. However, Yin argues that petitioners can begin collecting signatures in the interim, before submitting the petition on or after Dec. 25, when Han marks his first year in office. Yin has said that he will ask the Central Election Commission to issue a legal interpretation to resolve the matter. (Wang Shwu-fen and Matthew Mazzetta)

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