Ex-Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian to form party on Aug.18

Chen barred from role of party leader due to bribery charges

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Chen Shui-bian (Facebook photo)

Chen Shui-bian (Facebook photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Former Taiwan President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) will make good on his words by forming a new party – the “One Country One Side Action Party” (一邊一國行動黨) – on Aug. 18.

The party, to be launched at National Taiwan University Alumni Hall, is likely to be led by former DPP chairman and Taiwan premier Yu Shyi-kun (游錫堃), reports the Central News Agency. The politician has declined to comment on his role in the new party.

Chen, who is on medical parole after serving five years of a 20-year jail term for bribery charges, teased about the idea of establishing a new party in a Facebook post last week. The proposal was openly opposed by his son, Chen Chih-chung (陳致中), a Kaohsiung city councilor.

There are 152 party founders, including Janice Chen (陳昭姿), spokesperson for Chen Shui-bian's volunteer civilian medical team, and her husband Kuo Chang-feng (郭長豐), said the CNA.

Janice Chen noted that Yu is a preferable choice for leader of the party as he is a prominent figure in the pro-independence movement, but he has not made up his mind. The ex-Taiwan president would assume the role of spiritual leader and advisor for the party, she added, citing judicial issues that prohibit him from taking the post of party leader.