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Fri, September 22, 2023 | 21:51
Fall of star prosecutor
Prosecutors sought an arrest warrant for Hong Man-pyo, a prosecutor-turned-lawyer, Monday, over suspicions that he illegally peddled his influence for his clients, including Jung Woon-ho, CEO of the cosmetics company Nature Republic. Hong allegedly received 300 million won from Jung last August, when the prosecution was investigating the CEO’s alleged gambling, and promised to lobby senior prosecutors. He is also suspected of receiving 200 million won in 2011 to lobby Seoul Metro officials to expand spaces for Nature Republic stores in subway stations. Hong is also accused of evading 1 billi...
Beginning of new Assembly
Few would dispute that the 19th National Assembly, which ended its four-year term Sunday, was one of the worst-performing parliaments in Korean history. In 2014, the legislature didn’t pass a single bill for nearly five months amid a partisan deadlock over the proposed Sewol bill. Over the last four years, 18,000 bills and resolutions had been submitted, but nearly 10,000 of them were thrown out.
Africa diplomacy
It's undeniable that the importance of Africa in the nation's diplomacy has been ignored. This can be evidenced from the fact that only three Korean presidents had visited the continent before President Park Geun-hye embarked on her first trip to Africa Wednesday.
Dispute over hearings
President Park Geun-hye is reported to be leaning toward vetoing a controversial bill that will enable the National Assembly to hold hearings more frequently. On Monday, Lee Suk-joon, minister of the Office for Government Policy Coordination, called the bill “very worrisome,” noting that it would cripple the operation of the government. The Ministry of Government Legislation began scrutinizing the bill to find out if it reneges on the constitutional separation of legislative, administrative and judiciary powers. The ruling Saenuri Party is also moving to create public opinion favorable to Pr...
Cooperation with parties
The government and the ruling and opposition parties are gearing up for cooperative governance amid a radically changed political landscape. Strategy and Finance Minister Yoo Il-ho met with chief policymakers from the three main parties Friday to discuss an array of economy-related issues.
Uproot insider trading
Dongbu Group Chairman Kim Jun-ki is facing a criminal investigation about insider trading. The Financial Supervisory Service said Kim was suspected of avoiding financial losses illegally by selling shares he held in Dongbu Corp., the group's construction unit, and other affiliates.
Saenuri's implosion
A look at what has been going on in the governing Saenuri Party since last month’s general election makes people feel a sense of deja vu. Ten years ago, the then ruling Uri Party was thrown into turmoil following its humiliating defeat in local elections. The liberal party ceded power to the then main opposition Grand National Party, the precursor of the Saenuri Party, in the 2007 presidential election after going through lawmakers’ defections and a partisan split.
Dispute on Gwangju song
Controversy over an activist song, "March for the Beloved,’’ has become an annual event every May, causing our deep-seated ideological rift to deepen. This conflict has intensified even further this year as the government failed to act on President Park Geun-hye's indication of an affirmative resolution over the matter during her meeting with party leaders last week.
Disappointing reshuffle
There is one thing that clearly sets the incumbent Park Geun-hye administration apart from previous governments. In former times, it was customary for the President to conduct a big reshuffle of the cabinet or the presidential office when the ruling camp is hit by a crucial political event such as an election defeat.
Widening lobbying scandal
Two lawyers, who served as senior prosecutor and senior judge respectively, are facing investigations over an illegal lobbying scandal involving Jung Woon-ho, the imprisoned CEO of the popular cosmetics company Nature Republic.
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