Ma to address New Year's ceremony for last time as president

Ma to address New Year's ceremony for last time as president

Taipei, Dec. 31 (CNA) President Ma Ying-jeou will attend the flag-raising ceremony at the Presidential Office plaza on New Year's Day for the last time as head of state before he steps down next May.

The ruling Kuomintang's presidential candidate and Chairman Eric Chu will also be present at the early-morning ceremony in front of the Presidential Office, while the other two presidential candidates will attend flag-raising ceremonies at different venues on New Year's Day.

Tsai Ing-wen, chairwoman and presidential candidate of the opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), is scheduled to attend the flag-raising ceremony in the northern city of Taoyuan.

The other presidential candidate, People First Party Chairman James Soong, will be at the flag-raising ceremony in front of Taipei City Hall, along with Chu's and Tsai's running mates Wang Ju-hsuan and Chen Chien-jen, respectively.

The flag-raising ceremony at the Presidential Office plaza will begin at 6:30 a.m. with a military parade. Soprano Lily Lu and three male musicians will later lead the singing of the national anthem.

The national flag will then be raised above the Presidential Office, after which Ma will give a short speech, his final address at the New Year's Day flag-raising ceremony as president before he steps down on May 20 at the end of his maximum two four-year terms.

Other highlights of the ceremony will include a presentation by Taipei First Girls High School's marching band and honor guard, according to the organizers.

Taiwan's presidential election will be held on Jan. 16 and the new administration will take office in May. (By Hsien Chia-chen, Lu Hsin-hui and Elaine Hou)

Updated : 2021-03-01 20:25 GMT+08:00