Next DPP head should hold dialogue with President Ma: party founder

Taipei, March 18 (CNA) The next Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) chairperson should meet with President Ma Ying-jeou to discuss national policies, a DPP veteran said Sunday. The new DPP leader, expected to be elected in May, should respond positively to Ma's call for party-to-party dialogue and should not duck that invitation for any reason, said Hung Chi-chang, one of the 18 founders of the main opposition party. Such dialogue would help to initiate constructive negotiations between the DPP and the ruling Kuomintang, Hung said. To this end, the DPP should set up a committee exclusively for bipartisan negotiations, he suggested. He also urged the DPP to make a greater effort to nurture party talent in preparation for public elections in the years to come. "The new party leader should clearly define the DPP's goals and positions on issues and prepare the party to return to office," Hung advised. Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chu is currently serving as acting chairwoman of the DPP, following Tsai Ing-wen's resignation from the post at the end of February after she lost in the Jan. 14 presidential election to Ma. Chen will lead the party until May 27 when a new chairperson is scheduled to be elected. (By Wen Kuei-hsiang and Deborah Kuo)