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DPP and KMT quarrel over election debates

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – The Democratic Progressive Party and the Kuomintang accused each other over a failure so far to come to an agreement on the scheduling of live televised debates for the presidential candidates, reports said Tuesday.
With the January 16 elections only a month and a half away, no agreement has been reached yet on holding televised debates, despite the events being a tradition of Taiwanese presidential campaigns.
The KMT and the DPP were divided over which media should be the first to stage a debate, with the opposition saying it had promised Sanlih E-Television Co., Ltd. first, while the ruling party picking Public Television System Co.
The DPP accused PTS of favoring the ruling camp by scheduling a key meeting about the organization of the debates for Tuesday afternoon at 2 o’clock, while Sanlih was holding its meeting on the same subject at 3:30 p.m.
PTS was losing its image of impartiality and fairness by pandering to the demands of the KMT, DPP officials were quoted as saying by the United Daily News website.
According to the DPP, PTS first had sent them a message that their meeting would take place Wednesday afternoon, but three days later they brought the time for the talks forward to Tuesday afternoon, reports said.
As a result, the DPP had decided not to send a delegation to attend the meeting at PTS, reports said.
PTS is planning to organize a debate in cooperation with four Chinese-language newspapers and with the Central News Agency.
According to the DPP, the KMT had already agreed last August that Sanlih would be the first media to stage a debate. The DPP and the People First Party followed suit, but KMT chairman and presidential candidate Eric Liluan Chu suddenly favored PTS while accusing the opposition of trying to avoid a debate, the DPP said.
After its meeting with KMT and PFP representatives, the PTS-led group said it was still continuing efforts to organize a debate. No key elements had been discussed Tuesday afternoon in the absence of the DPP, a PTS statement said.

Updated : 2021-09-25 19:54 GMT+08:00