Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2013-09-20 04:41 PM
The event will take place as the president attends the 19th Congress of the ruling Kuomintang, which he chairs. The impetus for the protest was provided by his recent power struggle with Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng, but the event was likely to attract participants dissatisfied with a wide range of issues, reports said.
The organizers, a group of media and entertainment veterans, said Friday that more than 100,000 people had said online they would take part in the march, which would start at 2:30 p.m. on Taipei’s Renai Road, a short distance from the venue of the KMT congress.
At the end of the march, in front of the Presidential Office, members of the public would each have one minute to voice their opinion, organizers said.
Key slogans in the event would demand Ma’s resignation as KMT chairman, an apology, amendments to the Recall Act to make a presidential recall easier, the abolition of the Supreme Prosecutors Office Special Investigation Division (SID) and the adoption of an anti-corruption ‘Sunshine Act.’
The protest was not designed to support Wang but to demand more fairness in society, organizers said.
The decision to organize the September 29 event was made after the recent spat between Ma and Wang. On September 6, the SID accused the legislative speaker of influence peddling on behalf of a top opposition lawmaker. Wiretapping showed that Wang had called the Ministry of Justice to ask prosecutors did not appeal a not-guilty verdict in the legislator’s embezzlement case, the SID said.
In the days following the SID news conference, Ma launched a series of news conferences at which he described Wang as unfit to serve as legislative speaker. A KMT disciplinary committee agreed and revoked Wang’s party membership, threatening his position as speaker as well as his legislative seat.
Wang took the case to the Taipei District Court and won a temporary stay, but the KMT filed an appeal which was likely to be heard next week.
Despite the power struggle with Wang having functioned as the inspiration for the September 29 protests, activists for a large number of other causes were also likely to turn up, reports said.
An organization of victims of factory closures has reportedly said it would take part, while Wednesday’s death of Dapu home owner Chang Sen-wen was expected to encourage anti-expropriation campaigners to travel to Taipei. Chang owned a pharmacy which was torn down along with three other houses by the Miaoli County Government last July to make way for a science park. Chang’s supporters blame the Ma Administration and the KMT-run Miaoli County for his death.