Presidential office calls for passage of major bills in outgoing parliament
The outgoing National Assembly should act on major pending bills before its expiration next month, a senior presidential official said Thursday, expressing concern that their passage could drag on for months in the incoming parliament.
"Even if the new National Assembly begins, it will take a lot of time for it to operate normally," the official told reporters. "There is a concern normal operation could begin in September as it takes time to form committees and parties are also likely to start presidential primaries."
The official stressed the outgoing parliament should do its job before its term ends on May 29.
"There are a fair number of things that should be dealt with in the 18th National Assembly if state affairs are to go smoothly," the official said. "These things should be dealt with without fail if the National Assembly is to carry out its duties endowed by the people."
One of the major bills the government wants passed calls for empowering police to use location information about emergency callers, the official said. The bill was initiated following a public uproar over the grisly death of a woman at the hands of a Korean-Chinese kidnapper.
Police came under a firestorm of public criticism for mishandling an emergency call for help from the 28-year-old victim and wasting their opportunity to save her as they took too long in finding her.
The ruling Saenuri and the main opposition Democratic United parties plan to convene a special one-day plenary session of parliament next week. They are in agreement on passing a bill on preventing physical clashes in parliament, but more negotiations are needed for other bills. (Yonhap)