The Executive Yuan yesterday said that more deliberation was needed before a proposal to have the national emblem changed could be reviewed by the Ministry of the Interior.
Lawmakers at an extraordinary session at the legislature in Taipei on Friday voted to request an evaluation report from the ministry on the issue, saying that the emblem is too similar to that of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT).
The New Power Party (NPP) — which initiated the vote — said that the national emblem causes confusion over Taiwan’s status as a multiparty state, and was inappropriate given the nation’s 30 years of democratization.
Photo: Lee Hsin-fang, Taipei Times
It called on the ministry to report on the issue within two months.
The resolution passed 63-37, with votes cast along party lines, with the NPP and the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) voting for it, and the KMT voting against, while the five members of the Taiwan People’s Party abstained.
The resolution’s text says that the national emblem is “easily confused” with the KMT’s emblem, arguing that the similarity is improper 30 years after Taiwan’s transition to democracy, as it represents only a portion of Taiwanese.
Executive Yuan Secretary-General Li Meng-yen (李孟諺) said that while he agreed the emblems are similar, which could cause confusion, changing the national emblem would be contentious.
Lawmakers must proceed prudently, slowly and only after collecting feedback, Li said.
“Taiwan’s passports were recently redesigned, and the new design incorporates the national emblem,” he said, adding that changing it would mean paying to replace everything bearing the current emblem.
The KMT Central Standing Committee in 1928 passed a bill to make the anthem, emblem and flag of the KMT those of the Republic of China (ROC), and in so doing passed the National Emblem and National Flag of the Republic of China Act (中華民國國徽國旗法).
The KMT and national emblems portray a white sun over a blue background, but in the KMT emblem, the sun is larger and its 12 rays touch the outer edge of the blue circle that encompasses them.
The national emblem is used on uniforms and documents used by the military, on documents used by government agencies, on the country’s passport and on the flag used by the nation’s Olympic teams.
Former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said that the issue of the emblems’ similarity had already been addressed.
“The national emblem is described in the National Emblem and National Flag of the Republic of China Act, and it was defined after the KMT’s emblem,” he said.
Former New Taipei City mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫) said that the resolution was an act of “Taiwanese independence.”
“Could the pan-green camp stop putting on an act? If they change the national emblem, the next thing they change will be the national flag and then the country’s name,” Chu said.
“If they want to engage in independence activities, they should just clearly say so,” he said.
Additional reporting by Chen Yun and CNA
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