DPP, KMT offer different views on Cabinet reshuffle


TAIPEI–The opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) said Monday the Cabinet should undergo a full reshuffle to deal with the European debt crisis, but the ruling Kuomintang (KMT) demurred.

Tsai Huang-liang, a DPP caucus whip, said the European debt crisis is deepening, so the current election-oriented Cabinet should be turned into a financial Cabinet. People with financial backgrounds should serve as premier and vice premier, he added. “In this way, the exchanges and communications with the new Legislature will be better, and (the repercussions of) the European debt crisis can be avoided through cooperation between the executive and legislative branches,” the DPP whip said. In response, KMT Legislator Hung Hsiu-chu said the Executive Yuan will form a task force, not conduct an immediate reshuffle. As Vice Premier Sean Chen has expertise in economic and financial affairs, and as the recently concluded elections have not resulted in a change of the ruling party, it should be all right to have Chen lead the task force, Hung said.

Hung said that “all will respect the decision made by President Ma Ying-jeou.” KMT Legislator Lai Shyh-bao said the Cabinet will face a reshuffle in February when the new Legislature begins and also in May when the elected President Ma Ying-jeou will begin his second term. “Whether there is a minor reshuffle in February followed by a major reshuffle in May or simply a major reshuffle in May is still being considered by President Ma,” he said. Lai said that the Cabinet has no need to change just because the Jan. 14 elections are over, noting the current Cabinet is an “action Cabinet.”