The government should investigate whether certain politicians have abused their privilege to be vaccinated ahead of the groups prioritized for vaccination by the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), the New Power Party (NPP) said yesterday.
The party addressed the issue at a news conference after Executive Yuan political adviser Ting Yi-ming (丁怡銘), Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Huang Chao-shun (黃昭順) and Yunlin County Commissioner Chang Li-shan (張麗善) were accused of abusing their status to get themselves or family members vaccinated.
Six health clinics in Taipei were reported to have received 202 vials of COVID-19 vaccines distributed through the Taipei Department of Health, but to have failed to administer the vaccines according to the center’s priority groups.
“All of these incidents show that only the lives of those with privilege matter, and that ‘One Island, One Destiny’ is nothing more than a feel-good slogan,” NPP Legislator Chen Jiau-hua (陳椒華) said.
The incidents also exposed the challenges of administering the vaccines, Chen said, adding that the center should post online the number of people vaccinated and prevent people from exploiting loopholes in the system.
NPP Legislator Chiu Hsien-chih (邱顯智) said that he found the explanations given by Chang and the Taipei City Government “completely unacceptable.”
The NPP has received tips about similar incidents occurring at the central and local governments, Chiu added.
The Taiwan High Prosecutors’ Office should investigate whenever it receives reports of such incidents, and hold accountable those responsible, Chiu said.
Given the scarcity of vaccines, high-risk people should be immunized first, but there are selfish people who take advantage of their privilege to cut to the front of the vaccination line, NPP Legislator Claire Wang (王婉諭) said.
The central government should explain what it is planning to do to address the issue, she added.
“In a plenary session of the Legislative Yuan, we asked what the government would do if local government officials fail to comply with the priority groups approved by the CECC when distributing and administering COVID-19 vaccines,” Wang said. “Minister of Health and Welfare Chen Shih-chung [陳時中] clearly told us that the central government has the ultimate authority to decide who should be vaccinated first. If local governments fail to follow the order, the ministry could reprimand them by distributing fewer doses to them.”
However, the ministry’s way of reprimanding local governments would be unfair to people who are in a priority group and have been waiting to get vaccinated, Wang said.
“People of privilege are getting vaccinated, but localities where they get vaccinated are getting fewer doses because of them. This will make it even more difficult for people who are in a priority group to get inoculated,” she said.
Ting said that he could get vaccinated ahead of others because he is in the second priority group, which comprises central and local government disease prevention personnel, Wang said, adding that the definition of who falls into the group remains unclear.
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