TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — After Foxconn tycoon Terry Gou (郭台銘) announced he was leaving the Kuomintang (KMT) party today (Sept. 12), the party expressed its “deep regret” and said that it will deal with the violation of party discipline rules by its former member (Gou).

This morning, the tech tycoon’s aide Tsai Chin-yu (蔡沁瑜) announced that he had decided to quit the KMT effective immediately. “The KMT puts party interests ahead of national interests, which goes completely against Mr. Gou’s original intention to return to the party,” Tsai quoted Gou as saying.

Gou’s announcement came after a front-page advertisement was released in newspapers today calling for collaboration between Gou and the KMT presidential nominee Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜). The advertisement, which was placed by the KMT, included 31 signatures of senior party members, including former President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九), former Vice Presidents Lien Chan (連戰) and Vincent Siew (蕭萬長), Wu Den-yih (吳敦義), the party chairman.

In response, the KMT said that terms used in Gou’s statement, such as “pedantic” and “centuries-old Standing Committee” need to be discussed and are not in accordance with the facts. It also countered that the idiom “living in the Cao camp, but having one’s heart in the Han camp” (人在曹營心在漢) used to describe the 31 party members who signed the statement was flawed.

After Gou announced his resignation, Wu rushed back to his office at 10:55 a.m. and urgently contacted Party Disciplinary Committee Director Wei Ping-cheng (魏平政) and other party officials to discuss the matter. At 11:50 p.m., Cheng Mei-hua (程美華), acting director-general of the KMT’s Cultural and Communications Committee, and Wei held a press conference to express the KMT’s response.

Cheng said he “deeply regrets” Gou’s announcement. When asked by reporters about the communication between KMT Vice Chairman Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌) and Gou, Cheng said that the KMT had maintained contact through various channels and that the process went smoothly.

As for disciplining Gou for his abrupt exit, Wei said that the KMT has a complete procedure for party discipline, which must be submitted to the Party Disciplinary Committee for consideration after an investigation has been carried out. Wei said that the contents of Gou’s statement should be investigated and understood by the local party headquarters and that a decision should be made as soon as possible.

Cheng said that the KMT expressed its gratitude to all those who participated in the presidential primaries, the first in the party’s history. Cheng also emphasized that the party’s presidential candidate, Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜), was chosen through a fair, open, and transparent mechanism.

She said the party hopes KMT members will unite and make every effort to elect Han while enabling KMT legislature candidates to return the party to power in 2020 and put an end to the chaos. She said the KMT calls on all party members and supporters to abandon “hard feelings” incurred before and after the primary election and fully support the party’s nominees.

As for the honorary certificate bestowed upon Gou by the party in April, Cheng said its status is “under discussion.”