Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜) at a city council session yesterday apologized for taking three months off last year to campaign for January’s presidential election.
Han said that he was now prioritizing municipal affairs and was focused primarily on preventing the spread of COVID-19.
He was “doing two days’ work each day” to make up for time lost, he said.
Photo: Lee Hui-chou, Taipei Times
Han on May 5 attended a city council session for the first time in 201 days, giving a report on pandemic response measures.
At yesterday’s session, Han said the Kaohsiung City Government would be injecting NT$50 million (US$1.67 million) into the city’s economy to revitalize it, and that a cross-departmental team had been formed to handle the city’s response measures.
The city government would also tap into natural disaster reserve funds to procure supplies, he said.
Separately, Han listed his achievements, saying that since he took office the city’s agricultural exports had increased, tourism to the city was up, and progress had been made on tackling water and air pollution.
There were also improvements to English-language education and meal subsidies for children from disadvantaged families, he said.
The city government was now aiming to improve the economy, move forward with construction projects and connect Kaohsiung with the international community, he said.
With regards to the economy, Han reiterated his proposed “Love Ferris wheel” and shopping mall project, and said that it was “regrettable” that the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, which controls the site proposed for the project, had not yet given its approval.
The city government also plans to offer bursaries of NT$20,000 each to 100 outstanding Kaohsiung college students each year to help them study abroad, he said, adding that the names of the selected students would be announced in September.
Han said that he was “very sorry” for taking three months off while campaigning last year, but that he and the city government had been making up for it by working hard over the past three months so that residents could “live in peace and work happily.”
In response, Wecare Kaohsiung founder Aaron Yin (尹立) called Han’s apology “crocodile tears,” and urged city residents not to “be tricked again.”
Separately, in a statement issued yesterday the Taiwan Statebuilding Party said that while Han “apologized for taking leave,” he was “not apologizing to the city’s residents.”
The motivation for the apology was that Han had seen the results of a public survey, which found that residents were upset about Han taking leave from his duties to campaign, and that 45 percent of residents were in favor of a recall, the party said.
Han apologized in an attempt to avoid the recall, it added.
Meanwhile, former Chinese Nationalist Party chairman Eric Chu (朱立倫) said he believed the city’s residents would give Han another chance as long as “he worked hard on fighting the spread of COVID-19 and revitalizing the economy.”
FORCED TITLE: Most of the nation’s Olympians identify as Taiwanese, and a majority of them do not hail from Taipei, adding another layer of absurdity to the misnomer The sports world is to focus on the Tokyo Olympic Games starting on Friday, and once again Taiwanese will not have a “Team Taiwan” to cheer for, but will be stuck with the deceitful, contrived name of “Chinese Taipei.” It is a dishonest name, imposed by international politics under pressure from China and the International Olympic Committee, acquiesced to by the former lackeys on Taiwan’s Olympic committee. For a majority of Taiwanese, it is more fitting and simpler to shout “Go Taiwan!” (台灣加油). More people are saying that “Chinese Taipei” is a gross distortion and fraudulent representation for Taiwan’s star athletes in
‘FAILED TACTICS’: A lawmaker said Beijing’s actions in Hong Kong and Taiwan’s success at boosting its ties internationally have boosted identification as Taiwanese Self-identification as “Taiwanese and Chinese,” or solely as “Chinese,” has dropped to record lows, while 63.3 percent of the public regard themselves as Taiwanese, a survey released on Tuesday by National Chengchi University’s Election Study Center showed. Respondents identifying as Taiwanese and Chinese dropped to 31.4 percent, while those identifying solely as Chinese fell to 2.7 percent, the survey showed. The results reflect changes in attitudes since 1994 among Taiwanese toward independence and unification with China, as well as self-identification trends since 1992, commenters said. Support for independence was 25.8 percent, while about 5 percent of respondents said that they want the nation
The national Olympic team yesterday departed for Japan to compete in the Tokyo Games starting on Friday. The 134-strong Olympic delegation includes officials, support staff and 68 athletes, who are to compete in 18 sports through Aug. 8. Taiwan is competing in the Games under the name Chinese Taipei. The delegation is led by Taiwan’s top female weightlifter, Kuo Hsing-chun (郭婞淳), who is to carry the team flag at the opening ceremony. It also includes world No. 1 women’s singles badminton player Tai Tzu-ying (戴資穎), as well as athletes who are to compete in cycling, taekwondo, judo, shooting, canoeing, rowing and archery
ONLY EXCEPTIONS: The mayors of the two largest cities voiced concerns over hidden cases, while all other local governments are to follow eased CECC guidelines All local governments, with the exception of Taipei and New Taipei City, are to allow dine-in services at restaurants after the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC) on Friday announced that it would on Tuesday lower a nationwide COVID-19 alert to level 2. The center on July 8 allowed the resumption of dining at restaurants nationwide — despite keeping the alert level at 3. At the time, this prompted all cities and counties, except Penghu Country, to keep local dine-in bans in place. Following Friday’s CECC announcement that COVID-19 prevention measures would be further relaxed, the Taipei and New Taipei City governments