Independent Election Candidate Intimidated

By Gu Qinger & Ai Lin, Epoch Times and Sound of Hope Staff
August 31, 2006 12:00 am Last Updated: August 31, 2006 12:00 am

Sun Buer, an independent candidate for local representative of the People's Congress in Jianghan District of Wuhan City, China, was assaulted and intimidated by unidentified assailants on August 24. The assailants plundered Sun's election materials and verbally threatened him.

“They were like gangsters!” complained Sun Buer, a member of the Chinese Pan Blue Coalition[1]. “They robbed us in public and yelled threats at us. The passers-by were so scared that they all ran away.”

Sun said that the local government has been publicly harassing him in attempts to scare him away from the election.

The assault happened on the afternoon of August 24 when Sun and his friends, Ni Jiangfeng and Wan Li, were visiting local residents to gain support. Over ten people surrounded Sun and his friends, and robbed them of the flyers and other campaign materials.

Sun believed that the assailants worked for the local Residential Committee, which had been trying to sabotage the campaign of the Pan Blue Coalition. Sun said that another candidate named Peng Zuqi, current Vice Secretary of the local Residential Committee, had harassed him many times.

The Epoch Times called the Residential Committee, but the person who answered the phone hanged up as soon as the reporter mentioned Sun's name.

Sun also told the reporter that in the past week he had been visited by the local Residential Committee and the Public Security Bureau. Both threatened to destroy his election papers and flyers. However, Sun refused to give up the campaign, saying that what's important is not the result but the process of participation. He wishes to use the election process to understand ordinary people's lives and work, and to promote democratic awareness.

Sun said he had made a lot of preparation for the campaign. For the 8,000-people residential area, Sun printed 6,000 copies of his manifesto, 2,000 name cards, and made 300 T-shirts with his election slogans printed on them. As he could not give speeches to advocate his manifesto, Sun chose to visit the residents door by door to pass out his campaign materials and ask for voters' supports.

Sun told the reporter that he gave out about 100 T-shirts in the first few days. The voters were very happy and excited to talk to him, and took pictures with Sun in the T-shirts he gave them. But later things changed, said Sun.

“These days felt rather weird. I gave away many T-shirt, but I did not see anyone wearing them,” said Sun. “When I asked those who accepted the T-shirts, some just smiled in silence. Some other residents secretly told me what had happened after I promised not to reveal their identities. They told me that the Residential Committee took away the T-shirts, and told the residents to only believe in the Communist Party, and told people that I was a bad person. The residents said that they did not dare to offend the committee, so they had to let them take away the T-shirts.”

“China Pan Blue Coalition” is an internet-based alliance established over two years ago in mainland China. Since its foundation, the coalition has devoted to promoting democracy and freedom in China, and to provide a voice for minority groups. Although the Chinese government closed off the coalition's website many times, the alliance has grown bigger, and gained attention and support from people both in China and abroad.

[1] Pan Blue Coalition is a political coalition that is based in Taiwan. It consists of the Kuomintang (KMT), the People First Party, and the New Party. The name comes from the color of the Kuomintang emblem.