A BAN on banners and flags promoting candidates in the upcoming local elections took effect on Friday in Taipei, underscoring city government efforts to minimize visual pollution.
“This is a success in our struggle for a pollution-free campaign environment,” a Taipei City Government (TCG) official said. “We hope other parts of Taiwan will also embrace this meaningful measure,” the official said.
The ban was approved after councilors voted on Wednesday to strike Article 7 from the statute governing advertising items displayed by political parties and election candidates. The article stipulated that parties and candidates can set up banners and flags at designated public venues without application during the legally defined campaign periods.
Submitted by 31 councilors, the change has received the backing of the nation’s major political parties, including the ruling Kuomintang, Democratic Progressive Party and People’s First Party.
In addition to minimizing visual pollution, the TCG official said the measure also enhances safety for Taipei residents. “Locals will no longer be forced to dodge fallen flags or have their view obstructed by banners while driving,” the official said.
Taiwan’s largest ever nationwide local-level elections are set to take place November 29. A record 11,130 positions are up for grabs, comprising municipal mayors and councilors; magistrates, mayors and councilors of counties and provincial cities; township chiefs and councilors; aboriginal district chiefs and councilors; as well as borough and village chiefs.