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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

KMT secretary-general tapped to be new premier

ROC Central News Agency

2009/09/07 19:53:07
Add Presidential Office spokesman's statement Taipei, Sept. 7 (CNA) Ruling Kuomintang (KMT) Vice Chairman and Secretary-General Wu Den-yih was named Monday as the man who will take over as premier following the resignation Thursday of Premier Liu Chao-shiuan along with the rest of his Cabinet, according to Presidential Office spokesman Wang Yu-chi.

Wang also announced that Taoyuan Magistrate Eric Liluan Chu will be appointed vice premier. Liu earlier in the day announced at a news conference that he and his Cabinet will resign en masse after Thursday' s regular weekly Cabinet meeting to give President Ma Ying-jeou a free hand to form a new Cabinet.

Liu said President Ma Ying-jeou had accepted his resignation to take political responsibility in the wake of Typhoon Morakot, which wrought catastrophic damage in southern Taiwan, leaving about 700 people dead.

Liu noted that he tendered his resignation in mid-August to assume political responsibility for the administration's handling of the deadliest natural disaster to assail the country in half a century.

However, as the devastation wreaked by the typhoon was so great, the president asked him to stay in his post to oversee post-relief work, prompting him to put off his resignation until early September.

Liu said he has completed his mission because between 80 percent and 90 percent of the relief subsidies for victims of the storm have been distributed and some 92 percent of the people displaced by the typhoon have been temporarily resettled at several military barracks and state-owned dormitories.

He added that the Post-Typhoon Reconstruction Special Act has cleared the legislative floor, while the Post-Disaster Reconstruction Commission has laid out several crucial projects, including the development of a land conservation plan and the rebuilding of new homes for people left homeless by the disaster. Work to construct up to 1,000 new homes will start soon, according to the premier.

The premier expressed gratitude to Ma and to his Cabinet for the support they gave him in fulfilling his task, and he also thanked both his supporters and his critics. "God bless the Republic of China, God bless the people of Taiwan, " Liu said at the conclusion of the press conference. Minutes after Liu's announcement, Wang announced the appointments of Wu and Chu at a separate news conference.

In addition to confirming the achievements of Liu and his Cabinet, Wang quoted President Ma as praising Liu for setting a good example of a responsible chief of the executive.

He added that Ma approached Wu three days ago and the two decided on Chu's appointment.

Although the president consulted with Wu and Chu about their new appointments, he also made clear that he would brook no disagreement, telling them that "there is no right to say `no' at this critical time," according to Wang.

The other Cabinet members will be decided by the president and Wu after the latter takes office, Wang added. (By Y.L. Kao) ENDITEM/J



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