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Tsai promises executive order for borough chiefs

Tsai promises executive order for borough chiefs

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Democratic Progressive Party presidential candidate Tsai Ing-wen on Wednesday promised she would solve the status of borough chiefs with an executive order if she won the January 16 election.
Most opinion polls have put the opposition leader way ahead in the race against Kuomintang Chairman Eric Liluan Chu and People First Party Chairman James Soong. All three candidates were invited by an association of borough and village leaders Wednesday to reveal their opinions on relevant issues.
Borough chiefs say they operate on the edge of illegality because it is not clear whether they are civil servants or elected politicians. At Wednesday’s meeting, they asked for clarity from the presidential candidates.
During her half-hour address, Tsai reportedly thanked the chiefs for their efforts in providing services to the public. Borough wardens often help out during disasters such as fires or traffic accidents, and form a link between citizens and local government.
Tsai said that if she won the presidential election, she would of course push for legislation to clarify the status of the borough chiefs, but while waiting for the laws to pass, she would also issue an executive order.
The local chiefs were like academics, who often only found out they were regarded as government employees when they came in contact with the judiciary, Tsai said. At present, they were stuck in a third limbo between civil servants and elected politicians, even though they were elected by the public, she said. An executive order would help the borough chiefs to act without having to be afraid of the judicial repercussions of their actions, according to Tsai.
In his speech, KMT Chairman Chu described borough chiefs as “little mayors” while the mayors were “big borough chiefs,” promising them his full support if he was elected president.
Soong said they should have rights as well as duties, while praising borough chief elections as an example of basic democracy which was the reason why Taiwan was more advanced than China.


Updated : 2021-09-22 17:05 GMT+08:00