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Taiwan's Presidential Office spokesman resigns
Publication Date : 13-09-2013
Taiwan's Presidential Office spokesman Lo Chih-chiang announced his resignation after receiving permission from President Ma Ying-jeou yesterday, claiming that recent political conflicts had cost him his remaining drive for the job.
Lo said he would be spending more time with his family and on his writing after resigning, and not focussing on running for Keelung mayor as many media outlets have reported.
“I am determined to resign and will be saying goodbye to my good friends (in political circles),” said Lo.
The spokesman claimed that his position has been costing him hours of sleep, especially after Legislative Yuan Speaker Wang Jin-pyng was accused of illegal lobbying in a corruption case to keep Democratic Progressive Party caucus whip Ker Chien-ming from being found guilty. “In the past week, I had to attend meetings late into the night and have only been able to sleep for three hours each night before the telephone calls start coming in.”
Previous controversial cases that caused a great deal of hassle for the president and the ruling party had affected Lo's sleeping habits as well. “The Accounting Act amendment conflicts, Corporal Hung Chung-chiu's death, the Kuang Ta Hsing fishing disputes and the construction of the Fourth Nuclear Power Plant; this became my modus operandi. Whenever something important happens, I get less than five hours of sleep every night,” Lo complained.
“When my wife asked me why I spend so much time and energy on my job, I told her it's because I want a clear conscience, knowing that I've done my duty. But even this force of motivation has reached its outer limits,” said Lo, who added that he had been considering his resignation a year ago.
Lo revealed that the main reason for his resignation is not the fatigue but the negative comments and criticism he has received, which made his hard work seem fruitless.
“Please allow me to get my own way this once,” Lo said.
Wang violation is obvious: Lo
Even upon his resignation, Lo remained insistent that Wang had indeed lobbied in relation to the Ker verdict and stood his ground in supporting Ma. “I know that the ruling party has its faults in governing Taiwan and deserves to be criticised. But with all evidence pointing to Wang's obvious violation of the law, people persist in attacking President Ma for trying to restore justice,” Lo said.
Lo also voiced his opinion of local media outlets. “The right and wrongs of the case should be extremely clear, yet the local media insists on muddying everything. There are many things I wish to say, despite the negative outcome my words may bring; only when I step away from this position can I speak freely.”
On the president's side
“I share the same viewpoint as the president and understand his concerns. He will not make any allowances if something or someone goes beyond his limits,” said Lo, who also said that Ma would do the same if Lo himself was involved in illegal lobbying.
When asked about Ma's press conference — in which he clearly stated that Wang was no longer fit to lead the Legislature — that allegedly pressured the Kuomintang's Party Disciplinary Committee into dismissing Wang from the party, Lo replied that as the head of the party, Ma had the right to express his opinions on party-related issues.