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Talk of the Day -- Ma's nominees for heads of Exam, Control yuans

2014/05/07 18:27:42

President Ma Ying-jeou made his picks Tuesday for the next heads of the Control Yuan and Examination Yuan, which along with the Legislative, Executive and Judicial yuans make up the basic structure of Taiwan's government.

The two picks are widely viewed as conservative choices by a president weighed down by months of partisan battles over controversial issues. Both will require confirmation from lawmakers but are not expected to see much resistance.

Chang Po-ya, chairwoman of the Central Election Commission, has been nominated to head the Control Yuan, the nation's top supervisory agency. Wu Jin-lin, vice president of the Examination Yuan, has been nominated to head the government's highest personnel office.

The following are excerpts from coverage of the nominations in major local dailies:

United Daily News:

Choosing Chang for Control Yuan president, while unexpected, makes sense given her qualifications and reputation for being easy to get along with - especially important in the agency prone to "internal conflict."

That contrasts with outgoing Control Yuan head Wang Chien-shien, once one of Ma's favored generals, whose outspoken nature and personal style of leadership have led to no shortage of conflict in the agency. By choosing Chang, Ma has offered Wang an honorable exit while also adding Chang to the relatively small number of female appointees under his watch. As an independent, Chang's nomination is likely to meet with little resistance.

By pairing her with former Council for Indigenous Peoples head Sun Ta-chuan as a deputy, Ma has played his safety card by selecting a team that does not lend itself to accusations of partisanship. (April 7, 2014)

China Times:

Ma's nominations to the Control and Examination yuans are the perfect data for examining how much his administrative style has changed over the years.

His selections after taking office in 2008 of blue (i.e., Kuomintang) and green (opposition) candidates together received widespread claim for bipartisanship, though it did not pass the Legislature. Regardless, he was playing up his image as a president of the people.

This time, he's playing it safe. Chang will earn extra points for her independence of any political party, and her deputy Sun will earn favor as a rare aboriginal on the national scene.

The problem is that the Control Yuan is meant to be a powerful institution. Outgoing head Wang's fiery rhetoric may have made Ma "regret incredibly" his appointment, but will a watchdog body run by the mild-mannered Chang and Sun be able to perform its role?

The Chang-Sun nomination, as well as Ma's similarly non-controversial nomination for the Examination Yuan, are compromises, a list of names both ruling and opposition parties can live with, if not exuberantly.

It is an indication that the president has turned conservative after six often tumultuous years in office. For a lame duck president, what more could we expect? (April 7, 2014)

(By Wesley Holzer)

Related stories:
●May 8: Nominee for Control Yuan chief confident in her credentials
●May 8: Senior politician named president of Control Yuan
●May 7: Wu Jin-lin named as chief of Examination Yuan