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Taiwan's Cabinet not allowed to resign

POLITICAL LIMBO: Taiwan Premier Mao (right, shaking hands with Cabinet members yesterday) is going to take time off but President Ma has rejected an application by the Cabinet to resign. PHOTO: EUROPEAN PRESSPHOTO AGENCY


    Jan 19, 2016

    Taiwan's Cabinet not allowed to resign


    THE fate of Taiwan's Cabinet, which could carry on for another four months as caretaker, appeared to be in limbo yesterday after its application to resign, two days after the opposition won the presidency, was turned down by outgoing president Ma Ying-jeou.

    Vice-Premier Simon Chang said Premier Mao Chi-guo will take some time off, although Mr Ma had not allowed the Cabinet's resignation, reported Taiwan's Central News Agency (CNA).

    Mr Chang would be acting premier for the time being, with the other ministers remaining in their posts, until a final decision by Mr Ma on whether the Cabinet should be dissolved, said CNA.

    Mr Chang himself has indicated that he would not take over formally as premier.

    Mr Ma, who is handing over office to president-elect Tsai Ing-wen in May, has been appealing to the latter to form a Cabinet to replace the current one but she had declined to do so.

    According to Ms Tsai, the line of responsibility would be blurred with Mr Ma remaining as president and her Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) running the Cabinet, reported the United Daily News.

    Meanwhile, a commentary in China's state-owned Global Times warned Ms Tsai yesterday against seeking to formally split Taiwan from the mainland, saying such a move would lead to a "dead end".

    The DPP has traditionally backed independence for the island but Ms Tsai has moderated its rhetoric, promising to maintain the "status quo".

    Yesterday, the Guangzhou-based Southern Metropolis Daily ran a commentary saying China-based Taiwanese singer Huang An has committed an "eternal wrong" on cross-strait relations in indirectly assisting Ms Tsai win Taiwan's presidency on Saturday.

    Huang, who has engaged in identifying Taiwan celebrities who support independence from China, recently targeted Tzuyu, a Taiwanese member in the K-pop girl group Twice.

    Tzuyu apologised on Friday in a video for having inadvertently endorsed Taiwan independence, a move which some said spurred many young Taiwanese to vote for Ms Tsai.