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President urges voters not to slip into reverse

Kaohsiung mayoral candidate promises to expand police force

President urges voters not to slip into reverse

Democratic Progressive Party Kaohsiung City mayoral candidate and former political prisoner Chen Chu (陳菊) issued an emotional appeal to tens of thousands of supporters to vote for her and DPP Taipei City mayoral candidate Frank Hsieh (謝長廷), return a just verdict and affirm the progress of DPP administration, at a huge rally that ended a flurry of activities to show party unity on the last day of the campaign.
The 56-year old former Council of Labor Affairs chairwoman is locked in a tight battle with Kuomintang candidate and former I-Shou University vice president Huang Chun-ying for leadership of Taiwan's leading industrial port, which has been under three DPP mayors over eight years, including former premier Frank Hsieh, who is running for the Taipei City mayoralty.
DPP Legislator and campaign spokesman Lee Kun-tze told The Taiwan News that the result was "too close to call" and that it depended on the success of the two major camps to mobilize their core supporters to go the polls.
President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁), Premier Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌), DPP Chairman Yu Shyi-kun, Acting Kaohsiung City Mayor Yeh Chu-lan (葉菊蘭) and a host of DPP mayors, legislators and city council candidates appealed to voters to allow "Chen Chu to take over the baton" and "reject the road backward."
A spokesperson for Chen Chu's campaign headquarters stated that at 9 p.m. that the crowd had grown to 150,000, but no independent confirmation or police estimate was available.
Speaking at the end of the rally, Chen Chu began her remarks by guaranteeing further improvements in Kaohsiung City's public safety by expanding the ranks and upgrading the equipment of the city's police force and forming a "public order alliance" with the DPP-led governments in Kaohsiung and Pingtung Counties.
Saying that it was the responsibility of the city government to ensure the future of the youth in Kaohsiung, Chen vowed to promote policies that would allow women, senior citizens and other disadvantaged groups to "live with peace and dignity" and to provide interest free loans to youth to "realize their dreams, new enterprises and innovations."
'Opportunities for innovation'
Chen declared that Kaohsiung City had considerable prospects for vibrant industrial growth in the coming decade that would provide "challenges and opportunities for innovation" to the city's youth, whom she urged to remain in Kaohsiung and "struggle together with our government for Kaohsiung's progressive future."
The candidate noted that Kaohsiung's software park, aviation and cargo park and a planned trade and convention park already have over NT$80 million in investments and over 100,000 jobs but have been "slandered as mosquito parks" by her KMT opponent.
Citing her 37 years of experience in Taiwan's democratic, human rights and social movement, which included six years as a political prisoner, Chen stated that although her opponent had stated that she was an "outsider," she had lived in Kaohsiung since being released from prison and that although she was born in Yilan, "my home is Kaohsiung."
Chen also stated that she and Huang represented two types of politicians in Taiwan, one of which "struggled together with the Taiwan people and received no praise" and "the other which is very clever and has never known the pain of the people but only takes the harvest."
Chen urged voters to "affirm the achievements" of Frank Hsieh, former acting mayor Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁) and DPP Acting Kaohsiung City Mayor Yeh Chu-lan by voting for her Saturday.\
"If you want justice and fairness, vote for Frank Hsieh in Taipei City and for Chen Chu here and give us justice!" declared Chen.
Speaking before the mayoral candidate, President Chen, who spent the afternoon canvassing voters for the mayoral candidate in Kaohsiung City's Sanmin District on foot, cited the example of the dramatic come-from-behind 8 to 7 victory by the Taiwan baseball team over Japan Thursday to win a gold medal at the Asian Games in Doha, Qatar to encourage DPP supporters.
"If we win, we will win together and if we lose, we will lose together" and "if we are resolute and fight to the end, we will win final victory," declared the embattled president, who has seen his own popularity fall in the wake of charges of mishandling state affairs funds and three unsuccessful recall efforts by the pan-KMT controlled Legislative Yuan in the past six months. Chen declared that the triumph by the Taiwan baseball team showed that "nothing is impossible in this world."
"This election is the same, as we have been in the lead and have trailed in this campaign but what is most important is to see it to the end and win in the final inning," Chen stated.


Updated : 2021-10-17 23:48 GMT+08:00