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Lee Hoi-Chang: "Finding clues to pending issues vital to nat`l interest"

Lee Hoi-Chang: "Finding clues to pending issues vital to nat`l interest"

Posted September. 08, 2000 19:28,   


Rep. Lee Hoi-Chang, president of the main opposition Grand National Party (GNP), said in connection with the issue of normalizing parliamentary functions that GNP lawmakers` participation in the Assembly session would be meaningless unless the ruling camp takes convincing steps to address its irregular passage of a National Assembly revision bill through the Steering Committee and its illegal intervention into the probes of the ruling Millennium Democratic Party lawmakers` campaign expenses.

In an exclusive interview with the Dong-A Ilbo Sept. 8, the GNP leader asserted that addressing various issues that disturb national discipline is more important than GNP lawmakers attending the parliamentary session.

Lee claimed that if President Kim Dae-Jung intends to grapple with pending problems only with the majority parliamentary force, the ruling camp will not be able to lead the political arena. He urged Kim to become more candid and modest in this regard.

Noting that the pending problems would be resolved if the ruling camp abandons its egoism and arrogance, the opposition leader renewed his demand for President Kim`s apology for the unilateral passage of the Assembly law revision bill and a declaration that a similar incident would not recur. He also insisted that special prosecutors should be appointed to investigate the ruling camp`s alleged interference in the probes of MDP lawmakers` illegal election funding and the Hanvit Bank illegal loan scandal.

The GNP president went on to say that the general public does not regard the Hanvit loan scandal as merely as a case of fraud involving one branch chief and his accomplices, but a full-fledged scandal connected with some powerful figures, although they lack evidence of this. If President Kim tries to cover up the truth surrounding the scandal, his government will be shackled, Lee warned.

Referring to the question of a bipartisan summit with President Kim, concurrent MDP leader, the GNP gave a negative response, saying that now is not the time for such a meeting. Regarding the possibility of his visit to North Korea, Lee said that he was ready to meet with any one if it is necessary for the sake of national interests, but that he now has no plans in this respect.

Song In-Soo issong@donga.com