Taiwan's FTV Chairman ousted by board amid controversies

The television station's board of directors is set to convene on May 9 to elect a successor

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TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- Formosa TV (FTV) Chairman George P. Kuo (郭倍宏) was, suddenly and unexpectedly, ousted by its board of directors on March 14, and the board reportedly will convene on May 9 to elect his successor.

The board meeting reportedly took merely three minutes to dethrone Kuo in a 4:3 vote.

George Kuo joined FTV in 2016, and later in April of 2018 founded the pro-independence Formosa Alliance aimed to pressure the Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) government to initiate a referendum on independence from China. People familiar with the matter told Apple Daily that Kuo has been criticized for using the television station to promote his idea of pro-Taiwan independence, which includes rampantly expanding political affairs programs.

The political affairs programs created under Kuo's tenure are "Jeng Chin on FTV53" (政經看民視) hosted by Dennis Peng (彭文正) and his wife Amanda Lee (李晶玉), "Grand Interpretation of News" (新聞大解讀) by Hu Zhong-hsin (胡忠信), "Taiwan Forefront" (台灣最前線) by Charles Hsu (許仲江), and a new program "Hot News" (辣新聞) by famous TV personality Clara Chou (周玉蔻), which is set to air next week on March 18.

The insider told the paper that the pro-independence Taiwanese political commentator Yu Mei-mei (余莓莓) will soon join Chou to open a new show at FTV, adding that the company has incurred losses from producing the political affairs shows, with production costs far outpacing income.

The cash cows for the television station are its dramas and entertainment shows. The most profitable FTV dramas are "Feng Shui Family" (風水世家), "The Unforgettable Memory" (意難忘), "Fei Lung" (飛龍在天), "In Time with You" (我可能不會愛你), "Rookies' Diary" (新兵日記) and "Great Times" (大時代).

Besides the political shows' production disputes, Kuo is also involved in other controversies after his own construction company won a bid to build a new FTV building in Linkou, New Taipei City, in 2014, as well as in a scandal of tampering with records of board meeting resolutions, Mirror Media and NOWnews report.

FTV declined to respond to rumors regarding Kuo.