Focus Taiwan: Former Taipei mayor announces run for KMT chairman

Taipei, Jan. 20 (CNA) Former Taipei Mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) said Monday that he will run for chairman of the main opposition Kuomintang (KMT), making him the third person to announce their candidacy.

National Taiwan University Professor Chang Ya-chung (張亞中) and Blue Sky Action Alliance Chairman Wu Chih-chang (武之璋) have also said they will vie for the post.

In the Facebook post announcing his run, Hau, a former KMT vice chairman as well as Taipei mayor from 2006 to 2014, outlined the three guiding principles for reforms he would undertake if elected.

The first is “the party’s transformation must be fully in line with public opinion.” If elected, Hau said he would change the party’s constitution so that popularly elected officials would be guaranteed seats in the party’s decision-making bodies — the Central Committee and the Central Standing Committee.

A specific quota would be announced if he is elected, Hau said.

He would also recruit those “leading the conversation on national issues,” such as energy, environmental protection and gender equality, to join the party.

Hau’s second principle would be to pass the torch to younger party members. He promised that popularly elected officials under 40 years old would be guaranteed seats in the party’s decision-making bodies, and that younger members would be promoted to key leadership roles.

Lastly, Hau said the KMT must “chart a new course that is in line with the current international situation and public opinion, especially in terms of cross-strait relations.”

The KMT’s new position on relations across the Taiwan Strait must be the result of dialogue, discussion and debate within the party, Hau said, and it should get citizens to move away from the ruling Democratic Progressive Party’s independence rhetoric as well as the Communist Party’s unification threats.

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