Taiwan Church News
December 31, 2018 – January 6, 2019
Anti-Colonial Movement Remembered 30 Years After Wu Feng Statute Pulled Down
Reported by Chen Yi-fan
In the afternoon on 31st December 2018, many activist for indigenous movement gathered at the Chu-Lu Presbyterian Church of Tsou District to commemorate the historical moment when the notorious aborigine-bullying Wu Feng Statue was finally pulled down before Chiayi Raiway Station on 31st December 1988.
Deemed as a classic social action within the history of Taiwan’s social movement, this historical campaign was actually organized by the students of Yu-Shan Theological College and Seminary and the 9th training round of Urban Rural Mission(URM).
Though many participants of this campaign had experienced kinds of violence, oppression and intimidation from the police, prosecutor and their peers, the colonial and shame-manoeuvred story of We Feng sacrificing himself to those head-hunting aborigines was finally removed from school textbooks by the Ministry of Education in 1989.
Elder Huang Chao-kai, the master-mind behind this indigenous event, expressed that the pull-down of Wu Feng bronze statute was just the final piece of an irresistible domino of indigenous social campaign, such as asking for name change of Wu Feng Township into Alishan Township(more aboriginal friendly), requesting the Ministry of Education to delete the Wu Feng story from school textbooks, protesting before Chiayi Railway Station with cardboard and etc.
Many activists attending this campaign also shared their thoughts and memories on how they engaged with this historical moment. Mr Icyang Parod, a former President of Indigenous Rights Association 30 years ago and now the Minister of the Council of Indigenous Peoples, shared his panic experiences of being bullied every time since his was an indigenous school children: especially when the barbarous story of killing Wu Feng by the indigenous was taught in the classroom.
In the assembly, Mr Dannaive Bakikele(Elder of Lian-San Church of Paiwan Presbytery), Rev Sun Tse-quei(Tai-Wuh Church of Paiwan Presbytery), Rev Ljelemann Tasunuk(Wan-Ann Church of Paiwan Presbytery), Rev Tien Ten-chai(Sarkalan Church of Paiwan Presbytery), and Rev Marsaoh Nicar(Kaoliou Church of Amis Presbytery) also shared the interesting stories how they prepared and worked together to pull down the Wu Feng Statute on that historical date.
Citing the courageous biblical story of Esther, standing up bravely for what she was called on the historical occasion for her people, Rev Hsih Ming-hsiong of Chu-Lu Church gave his sincere thanks-giving to these extraordinary brothers and sisters fighting for the justice of the oppressed, and encouraged the audience to keep calm and still marching forward against headwinds as there are still many challenging tasks lying ahead for the indigenous movement!
Translated by Peter Wolfe