Hsieh turns down Ma's request to run for Keelung mayor

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Kuomintang (KMT) Legislator Hsieh Kuo-liang (謝國樑) yesterday said that as his family opposes the idea of him running for Keelung mayor, he has turned down President Ma Ying-jeou's request, adding that he thinks the most important thing at the moment for his party is to find a well-reputed candidate to run for election at the end of this year.

Ma on Thursday night spoke with Hsieh about the Keelung mayoral election issue.

The president reportedly tried to persuade Hsieh to seek the Keelung mayoral post.

He said he had told Ma about his family's position regarding the election, adding that he believes Ma understands him.

Hsieh went on to say to his party that the most essential task at the moment is to find a well-reputed person and place him or her in position for the election.

The KMT's Central Standing Committee at a meeting on Wednesday made a resolution to revoke Huang's nomination over his alleged involvement in corruption and improper lobbying.

Huang on Thursday told a press conference that he insists on running for the mayoral position despite his party's resolution.

Hsieh yesterday commented on the upcoming Keelung mayoral election, saying that the election prospects are not very promising at the moment and he hopes Keelung Municipal Council Speaker Huang Ching-tai (黃景泰) will make a wise decision for himself and for the party.

Many commentators have said that Hsieh may be the only candidate able to defeat the opposition in the election.

In response, Hsieh said Keelung needs experienced and professional lawmakers to serve the city, adding that there are still a lot of outstanding candidates that can run in the mayoral election.

Hsieh said that although he will not pursue the post of Keelung mayor, he will do his best to continue to support the KMT's campaign in the city.

Hsieh further said that since he has served as a lawmaker for a long time, the most important thing for him is to play his role well in the Legislative Yuan and that idea has never changed.

Commenting on Huang's latest decision, Hsieh said that if Huang insists on taking part in the election, it will bring a great burden on the KMT's potential candidate. Hsieh said he hopes that Huang and the party will find a way to create a win-win situation.