Lawmakers yesterday finally approved the names of 12 nominees for positions on the first National Communications Commission which is expected to be fully functional by Chinese New Year.
Ruling and opposition parties expressed hope that political forces would not intervene in the operation of the NCC in the future and that Taiwan's media would be supervised by an independent organization, not the Government Information Office.
But the GIO intends to ask the Grand Justices to interpret the Constitution in order to resolve a dispute between the GIO and the NCC over whether the NCC's power infringes on the GIO's domain.
Under the Organic Law of the NCC, the 12 nominees should voluntarily assemble in three days to establish the organization. At this time the members will select a president and vice president amongst themselves. After the president and vice president of the NCC have been selected, the premier should inaugurate them within a seven-day period.
Though the NCC is expected to be functional by the Chinese New Year, the GIO questioned its constitutionality because the new organization will cause an imbalance of power between the Executive Yuan and the Legislative Yuan.
GIO Director Yao Wen-chih pointed out that the makeup of the NCC was based on the share of seats each party currently holds in the Legislature, with the KMT having a distinct majority.
He also stressed that the NCC's role will be purely administrative and supervisory, so the GIO was still responsible for helping to develop media industry policies.
People First Party Legislator Lee Yong-ping (李永萍), however, said lawmakers voted for these members in light of their professional abilities and not out of any sort of bias.
For example, legislators of the pan-blue alliance also confirmed those members who were recommended by the Cabinet and the pan-green alliance, she said. She urged Yao not to waste tax payers money by requesting the Grand Justices interpret the Constitution.
Although 13 members of the commission were chosen by the NCC Member Review Committee from among 18 candidates on December 11 last year, DPP-recommended Lu Chung-chin, a National Tsinghua University professor, withdrew his name one day after he was recommended by the review panel. At this time, the Cabinet had refused to forward the list to the Legislative Yuan for approval because it was lacking one member.
DPP legislative whip William Lai (賴清德) said the DPP will discuss the two new recommended candidates when the DPP legislative caucus convenes today.
The twelve members of the NCC are KMT-recommended Liu You-li, Wu Chung-chi (吳忠吉), Lin Tung-tai, Su Yung-chin, Lin Yi-ping and Liu Kung-chung, PFP-recommended Liu Chung-the and Lee Tzu-yuan, DPP-recommended Hsih Shih-hao, Cabinet-recommended Weng Hsiu-chi and Chen Ming-syan, and TSU-recommended Hsieh Chin-nan.