TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — A pro-Taiwan independence group has filed a lawsuit against Taipei City Mayor Chiang Wan-an (將萬安) in an attempt to compel him to bury his great grandfather, Chiang Kai-Shek (蔣介石).
Taiwan Nation (台灣國) Chairman Chen Chun-huan (陳峻涵) on Wednesday (March 1) criticized the mayor’s opportunism in using his family’s legacy during his election campaign and then failing to take responsibility for their historical wrongdoings once elected. He said Chiang should take responsibility and dismantle the Taoyuan mausoleum where Chiang-Kai Shek’s coffin is currently preserved and bury his coffin, per CNA.
Chen said that according to Taiwan law, apart from during ceremonies conducted on the day of a funeral, corpses are not allowed to remain in coffins unburied. According to the Mortuary Service Administration Act, Chen’s assertion is correct, though this may conflict with Taiwan’s National Burial Act, which allows for a memorial hall to be established for citizens of the “Republic of China with special service or an outstanding contribution to the improvement of the status of the nation.”
Whether or not Chiang Kai-shek’s contribution to the nation was outstanding remains controversial, as Taiwanese still live with the memory of his authoritarian military dictatorship. Chiang Kai Shek originally wished for his remains to be repatriated to China on the assumption there would be an eventual “national reunification” with the mainland.
Chiang Kai-Shek died in 1975 and his mausoleum and the surrounding eight-acre grounds continue to receive annual government funding.