TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Hundreds of thousands of people marched through the streets of Kaohsiung Saturday (Dec. 21), with one group demanding the recall of Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) and the other supporting his bid for president.
The Kuomintang (KMT) presidential candidate himself dropped out of the parade, limiting his appearance to a speech at the endpoint of the march due to security advice, reports said.
The WeCare campaign has collected more than the 300,000 signatures necessary to launch a recall vote against the mayor, who has been accused of being too absent from the city and making grand promises without backing them up with action.
While the authorities are still reviewing the recall proposal, the vote would most likely take place in April or May, after the presidential election on January 11.
The group asked for 100,000 supporters of its recall effort to march in Kaohsiung on Saturday.
KMT decided to hold a counter-march in support of Han’s presidential candidacy. Organizers said Saturday afternoon that their march had attracted 300,000 participants, UDN reported.
Due to fears over possible violent clashes between radical supporters of both camps, an estimated 3,000 police officers were stationed around the city, including at MRT stations. The chief of the National Police Administration left Taipei for Kaohsiung to direct the security measures, reports said.