The presidential office has no plan to cancel the nomination of the current chief of the National Human Rights Commission for another term despite opposition allegations of a series of ethical lapses against him, a senior official said Wednesday.
President Lee Myung-bak named Hyun Byung-chul for another three-year term at the helm of the commission last month. The National Assembly held a confirmation hearing for him, but did not approve the nomination, as the main opposition party claimed his ethical standards are questionable.
The opposition raised allegations of plagiarism, real estate speculation, draft dodging by his son and other ethical lapses. Hyun has rejected most of the accusations as unfounded and claimed that plagiarism criteria was different in the past.
"For now, we have no plan to withdraw the nomination," a senior presidential official said. "We believe there are no serious problems that make him unable to carry out his duties."
Though the parliament did not approve Hyun's nomination, President Lee still can go ahead and appoint him. In South Korea, there are two kinds of parliamentary confirmation hearings, depending on whether parliament has the right to reject nominations, and the Assembly cannot reject the nomination in Hyun's case. (Yonhap)