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NPP candidates declare for LY races in Taipei, Taichung

NPP candidates declare for LY races in Taipei, Taichung

Freddy Lim, head of the Party Structure Office for the New Power Party NPP, announced Thursday that he will enter the race for the legislative seat in Taipei’s Zhongzheng and Wanhua Districts, contesting the seat currently held by the KMT's Lin Yu-fang. Lim had originally declared for the race in Daan District but said that he would withdraw from that particular contest after Fan Yun of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) announced that she would run in that district.

Lim’s decision to pull out of Daan has been seen as a move toward reconciliation between the two nascent political parties, which emerged from a schism in the Taiwan Citizens Union after members of the activist group parted ways over strategies toward nominations for the Legislative Yuan.

At almost the same time, human rights lawyer Ko Shao-chen officially announced her candidacy for the Legislative Yuan in Taichung’s 5th electoral district, where she will go up against KMT incumbent Lu Shiow-yen. The area includes the North District and Beitun District of Taichung City.

The NPP held a press conference Thursday morning in the square in front of Lungshan Temple in Wanhua. Writer Neil Peng, who wants to run for a constituency in New Taipei City, was also on hand to lend encouragement and support to the two NPP candidates.

Ko noted that Beitun is her hometown and remarked on the long-lasting grip of Jason Hu on the mayor’s office, which was finally loosened last year on November 29 after 13 years. Lu Shiow-yen has held the legislative seat in the 5th Electoral District even longer, in a term now standing at 16 years. Ko said that despite her long period of service, Lu has little to show for it. There has been little or no improvement in the overall situation in the area. She stressed her own long record of active involvement in community and social issues in central and southern Taiwan and pledged to work on behalf of the people of the North and Beitun districts if elected.

Lim said that following his announcement that he was withdrawing from the race in Daan, many friends who are members of the SPD expressed their gratitude for his gesture. He noted that he grew up in Daan, but in the interest of the NPP and other newly-formed third parties as well, he decided to pull up stakes and go for the Zhongzheng–Wanhua constituency instead.

He noted that he and other members of the NPP are constantly involved in evaluating and discussing their strategy in approaching local elections. He explained that one of his insights came when he was interviewed by reporters from foreign media outlets during Wednesday’s series of events related to March 18 and the Sunflowers Student Movement.

Lim noted that people today are being motivated not only by the students who occupied the Legislative Yuan last year, but also by those who have worked to guarantee the people’s rights in the Dapu demolition in Miaoli and the Wen-lin-yuan dispute in Taipei’s Shihlin and the tussle over coastal development in Taitung’s Mei-li-wan Bay. He said that in these incidents and others, many young Taiwanese have had to leave their homes and families. As he explained it, "They leave their homes precisely to guard their loved ones and their own homes, battling tirelessly with the monsters involved in political and business collusion, so that when they go home again they can be sure their own families will be safe."

Lim added that after he announced his withdrawal from the Daan race he held discussions with the Greens and members of other parties and settled on his present target. He said the SDP has indicated that they will not run a candidate in that area, while as far as other parties are concerned, “they have their own schedules and procedures.” He concluded by saying that he believes he stands a better chance of winning in the Zhongzheng-Wanhua area.

Other candidates in the Zhongzheng-Wanhua District so far include Tree Party member Rebecca Lin, who has already committed to the race, and DPP Taipei City Councilor Tung Chung-yen.

Updated : 2021-09-20 20:23 GMT+08:00