What you need to know
A daily breakdown of Taiwan's top stories and why they matter.
Kuomintang (KMT) chairman Wu Den-yih (吳敦義) has drawn criticism for proposing that only KMT members should be allowed to decide the party’s next presidential candidate.
While Wu insisted that loyal KMT party members should have the upper hand in the candidate selection process, some have insinuated he is trying to rig the process for himself, the Taipei Times reports.
Wu is rumored to be plotting a run for president in the upcoming 2020 presidential campaign.
According to the Taipei Times, Wu said: “If we choose not to conduct a poll among party members, it is a no brainer that [the public] would want to select someone who would be easily defeated.”
Voices within the KMT have pushed for the party to choose its candidate exclusively via public opinion polls, rather than the traditional method of considering both public opinion polls (with results weighed at 70 percent) and party member surveys (30 percent).
The Taipei Times speculates that Wu’s standing as KMT chairman would give him an advantage in a “party member only” poll.
If Wu joins the race to represent the KMT in the 2020 election, he would join former New Taipei City mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫) and legislator Wang Jin-pyng (王金平), who have both stated they plan to enter the race as presidential candidates.
Probe Launched by COA After Tainted Eggs Reach the Market
Taiwan’s Council of Agriculture (COA) said it will seek to shorten the time for fipronil testing to one week and pledged to boost monitoring of Taiwan’s egg farms after over 27,000 eggs were found to have reached the market since late January.
The COA also said it would investigate the source of insecticide, which was found to exceed the maximum amount of fipronil by up to six times in some instances, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The eggs were sold by a Changhua County farm to a shop in Taipei, which also sold the eggs on to shops in New Taipei City’s Tucheng and Banqiao districts.
The FDA separately announced that blood pressure medicines had been recalled by two local pharmaceutical firms after they were found to contain carcinogens. The Taipei Times has the details.
Chan Sisters Score Win for Taiwan in Qatar Women’s Doubles Event
Taiwanese sisters Latisha Chan (詹詠然) and Chan Hao-ching (詹皓晴) won the women’s doubles titles at the Qatar Total Open on Saturday, defeating fourth-seeded Anna-Lena Groenefeld and Demi Schuurs.
The Chan sisters won the first set 6-1 before dropping the second set 3-6. They then prevailed in a super tie-break set, 10-6, to vanquish the Germany-Netherlands pair.
The Qatar win is their second of 2019 and their 14th women’s doubles title of their career.
Other news from Taiwan:
► An intimate deep dive into Taiwanese identity from Alice Su that is 110 percent worth the read. (Los Angeles Times)
► Taiwan’s exports fell for a third straight month in January, but the pace of decline was slower than expected. (Reuters)
► Taipei mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲) has once again teed off on perceived hypocrisy, denouncing the idea of abolishing military conscription while promoting Taiwanese independence. (Taipei Times)
► A Changhua County commissioner’s chat bot replied “That’s not bad” in response to a message from a potentially suicidal resident. (Taipei Times)
► “Will China Seize Taiwan?” (Foreign Affairs)
► DHL says Taiwan is the world’s most 24th “connected” country via a measurement of international flows of trade, capital, information and people. (CNA)
Editor: Nick Aspinwall (@Nick1Aspinwall)
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