• Directory of Taiwan

Greens: Chu, KMT not sincere about constitutional reform

Greens: Chu, KMT not sincere about constitutional reform

DPP legislators Li Chun-yi, Mark Chen, Chen Chi-mai, Chen Ting-fei and Cheng Li-chun held a joint press conference Tuesday on the first day of the Legislative Yuan’s new session to protest KMT intransigence on the question of Constitutional reform. The four noted that the DPP has tried repeatedly to get something going on an amendment to the Constitution, only to meet KMT resistance for what they called “101 times.”

The five DPP lawmakers questioned the sincerity of KMT leaders and legislators on the matter of Constitutional reform. They said that if the Blue Camp is really serious about bringing about reform in government it should be willing to talk about topics other than one or two pet ideas. The five said the DPP is ready to move and if the KMT will abandon its stubborn attitude the Legislative Yuan could easily set up a Constitutional committee to begin work on a meaningful amendment within two weeks.

Li Chun-yi criticized both Blue legislators and KMT leaders for refusing to cooperate with the DPP. He asked whether the KMT was really serious about Constitutional reform, or simply putting on a show.

Li said the current administration and the government are incapable of responding in a timely manner to the needs and desires of the people of Taiwan. He said that this inability to respond has caused numerous difficulties for Taiwan’s representative democracy. He said that in many instances legislators fail to act in accordance with the directives of the party, the President is allowed to escape responsibility for the nation’s problems and the Premier has responsibility but no power. At the same time, the institutional independence of the judiciary is constantly battered by interference from the executive branch. All of this goes to show that the moment for meaningful Constitutional reform has arrived.

Li noted that the majority of legislators belong to the KMT but the party has failed to take a clear position on Constitutional reform. Other than clamoring for a couple of issues such as adopting a parliamentary system and the idea that Premier should be approved by the Legislative Yuan, they refuse to make their position clear on other topics such as the right of the President to dissolve the Legislative Yuan and an increase in the number of seats in the Legislative Yuan
Li pointed out that DPP legislators have presented six fully-developed propositions for amendments to the Constitution including abolition of Examination Yuan, a lowering of the threshold for constitutional referendums, the delineation of more human rights in the Constitution and other ideas meant to make the Constitution more current and relevant. To their consternation, they have found their efforts blocked in committee some 101 times They have found themselves limited to talking about lowering the voting age to 18 and approval of the Premier by the Legislative Yuan, and little other progress has been made.

Li said that if the KMT is really sincere about Constitutional reform, it should come up with a complete description of what it wants, with supporting evidence, rather than just shouting about a parliamentary system and approval of the Premier

Chen Ting-fei criticized KMT chairman Eric Chu for calling for a Constitutional amendment, but failing to take any action on the issues. He dismissed Chu’s claims that he is in favor of Constitutional reform as nothing short of political trickery. He urged Chu to discuss relevant ideas in good faith and not treat Constitutional reform as a trifling matter.

Updated : 2021-09-22 14:53 GMT+08:00