DPP presidential candidate names campaign headquarters chief

Taipei, Aug. 12 (CNA) Opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairwoman and presidential candidate Tsai Ing-wen (???) announced Wednesday that the DPP Central Standing Committee has designated Chen Chu (??), the incumbent Kaohsiung mayor, as chairwoman of the party's presidential campaign headquarters. Lauding Chen's vital role in the party and her impressive performance as Kaohsiung mayor, Tsai said Chen has participated in all the critical events in Taiwan's democratization progress. She said she expects that under Chen's leadership, the DPP presidential campaign will be well integrated. The 65-year-old Chen is into her third term as Kaohsiung mayor. Enjoying high popularity, especially among DPP party members, she is deemed the best performer among the heads of Taiwan's six special municipalities, according to a survey released May 28 by local magazine Global Views Monthly. A highly respected senior figure in the DPP, Chen's political participation began in the 1970s. She was imprisoned for six years between 1980 and 1986 for her role in the 1979 Kaohsiung Incident. Her previous positions include social affairs department chief of the Taipei city government and of the Kaohsiung city government, and chairwoman of the Labor Affairs Commission under the Cabinet. In recent weeks, there had been speculation that Tsai might ask Chen to be the DPP vice presidential candidate. And inevitably, Tsai was asked by the media whether the designation as campaign headquarters chief eliminates the possibility of Chen being put on the election ticket. Declining to answer the question, Tsai said that the two issues need not be correlated and that she will announce the candidate when the time comes. (By S.P. Yeh and Lillian Lin)