Taiwan Premier Su Tseng-chang recently demanded an investigation of Taiwanese speed skater Huang Yu-ting after she was spotted wearing a Team China uniform before the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.
In a statement on Saturday, Su’s office asked Taiwan’s Ministry of Education (MOE) and its Sports Administration (SA) to investigate Huang, 33, after she was seen in a video wearing a Chinese national team skinsuit during practice before the Winter Games, Reuters reported.
Su’s office said Huang’s actions were “ inappropriate” and called on MOA and SA officials to give her “adequate punishment,” according to Cabinet spokesperson Lo Ping-cheng, Focus Taiwan reported. Taiwan’s Presidential Office also backed the investigation and punishment in a separate statement on Saturday.
“Members of the national team represent the country in competitions,” President Tsai Ing-wen’s spokesperson Xavier Chang said, adding that “there should not be any controversial words or deeds that damage the nation’s honour.”
Huang faced online backlash after she was spotted wearing the Team China skinsuit in a training video that she posted on Jan. 23, Nextshark previously reported.
After gaining much attention online, the athlete, who is one of the four Taiwanese representatives at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, took down the video on Feb. 3, Taiwan News reported.
Speaking to Beijing reporters on Thursday, Huang, who was the flag bearer for Taiwan during the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics, explained that a Chinese friend gifted the skinsuit to her.
“For me, it was just the friendship. She gave it to me, the suit, and I just wore it when I was practicing. I didn’t mean anything,” the athlete said. “I posted the video because I just want to tell everyone that I go to the Olympics. I am happy with that.”
Steven Chen, Taiwan’s national team leader at the Winter Olympics, said on Saturday that the Chinese Taipei Olympic Committee is “expected to carry out a review in April.”