Taiwan’s KMT party owes money to Mao
Posted on July 4, 2012, Wednesday
TAIPEI: Historical documents on display in Taipei show Taiwan’s ruling Kuomintang (KMT) party owes late Chinese communist leader Mao Zedong money from a brief period nearly 90 years ago when he was a member.
“The KMT failed to pay the salary to Mao and a number of other party members over a three-month period in 1924 when it was struggling financially,” Shao Ming-huang, the head of KMT Party Archives, told AFP yesterday.
The nationalist KMT was China’s ruling party for two decades until it lost a civil war to its communist rivals led by Mao in 1949, and was driven into exile on Taiwan.
In the early 1920s Mao, already a dedicated communist, was elected to the KMT’s central committee and became an executive of the party’s Shanghai branch.
It was part of a strategy under which the KMT and the communists agreed to shelve their differences and cooperate to defeat local strongmen in order to unify China.
As the Shanghai branch chief, Mao was supposed to receive 120 silver coins a month.
“I cannot give a rough equivalent in today’s money. But I’m sure it was good pay at the time, about the salary levels of college professors then,” Shao said. — AFP