CENTRAL NEWS AGENCY
In response to a newspaper report that an internal struggle was brewing in the ruling Democratic Progressive Party, a key DPP lawmaker urged the public Friday not to rehash the issue and split the party.
DPP legislative caucus whip Ker Chien-ming (柯建銘) issued the call after the China Times reported that Shen Fu-hsiung (沈富雄), a former DPP lawmaker, urged the other 10 DPP members listed along with him as "11 bandits" by the party's Central Standing Committee and possibly facing disciplinary action for airing comments in favor of reform, to fight back collectively against the party central.
According to Ker, there are no so-called "11 bandits, " no "pro-reform" force and no one who is blindly loyal to President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) within the DPP. He called on the media to stop dividing the party.
The "11 bandits" also include lawmakers Shen Fa-hui, Lin Shu-shan (林樹山), Tsai Chi-chang and Cheng Yun-peng, as well as former lawmaker Tuan Yi-kang (段宜康), most of whom belonged to the now dissolved New Tide Faction - a reform-minded and powerful faction before the DPP ordered a disbanding of its various factions earlier this year.
As an open and diversified democratic party, the DPP should be tolerant of different viewpoints, Shen Fa-hui said, adding that each DPP member should be keen to reform the party although through different means.
Lin contended that everyone is free to disagree with others' opinions but said that he cannot accept malicious attacks as part of a power struggle. Commenting on a reported rumor that some DPP members and supporters asked the party not to nominate the 11 members to take part in any future elections, Lin said that the party should heed the public mandate in judging the matter and that the party must listen to the people if it hopes to keep moving forward.
Tuan said that he will continue making suggestions to the party and will insist on sticking to the party's ideals and core values.
The DPP must protect its precious traditional values regarding gender equality, ethnic harmony and mutual understanding, Tuan argued.
For his part, Tsai said that the Taiwan people have high expectations for the DPP to stand out as a pluralistic party that strives for Taiwan's identity.
CENTRAL NEWS AGENCY