TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Members of Taiwan's minor parties on Wednesday (Sept. 2) expressed concerns over the resemblance between the Kuomintang (KMT) party flag and the country's national emblem that was kept in the new passport design.
In response to the release of the new passport design, which highlights "Taiwan" to draw a distinction between Taiwan and China, New Power Party (NPP) legislator Chiu Hsieh-chih (邱顯智) said he was disappointed by the government's decision to keep the national sun emblem. He said the emblem was designed in 1928 based on the KMT flag and represents the one-party state ideology at the time.
Chiu argued that Taiwan has evolved from authoritarianism to liberal democracy and that no political party alone should represent the country. He said voters have lost their trust in the KMT and will continue to do so unless it takes practical actions to demonstrate its support for democracy and the country, including changing its party emblem.
Chiu said the KMT can design the new symbol based on their preference as long as it does not resemble too closely the national emblem. He added that the change will contribute to social harmony as well as the KMT's political interests, reported Liberty Times.
In a Facebook post, Taipei City Councilor Miao Po-ya (苗博雅) of the Social Democratic Party (SDP) also urged the KMT to alter its symbol. She said the KMT's continual objection to the change of the national emblem or its party flag only shows its ambition for one-party rule.
Miao stressed that the current national emblem has not been accepted by the majority of the Taiwanese and that the "National Emblem and National Flag of the Republic of China Act" was established without democratic deliberation. She suggested that the Legislative Yuan prohibit political parties from having symbols too similar to the national emblem, reported New Talk.
Taiwan Statebuilding Party (TSP) legislator Chen Po-wei (陳柏惟) also said he believes the new passport design is a compromised version. He said the government should remove the national emblem from the passport and avoid political controversies altogether, according to Storm Media.
KMT party emblem (left) highly resembles Taiwan's national emblem (right). (Facebook, Karen Huang photo)