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Politicians Collected More Political Funds,“Ignoring Economic Crisis“

Politicians Collected More Political Funds,“Ignoring Economic Crisis“

Posted December. 11, 2001 09:19,   


Politicians have collected more political funds every year since the International Monetary Fund (IMF) management was introduced in 1997.

In addition, the portion of the patronage by the supporters has increased continuously, revealing the dependency of politicians on the political sponsors.

The Donga Ilbo and Yonsei University Center for International Studies revealed such a fact by the surveying the official documents of National Election Commission about the statements of account of the supporter`s association and the local chapters from 1996 to 2000.

According to the survey, the average political funds of the politicians were 196,700,000 won in 1997, down from 255,470,000 won in 1996, but continuously increased since then from 233,280,000 won in 1998, 241,990,000 won in 1999, to 391,160,000 won in 2000.

The portion of the political patronage in the political funds decreased to 115,910,000 won in 1997 from 129,080,000 won in 1996, but has increased to 134,230,000 won in 1998, 182,780,000 won in 1999, and to 222,710,000 won in 2000. In consequence, the ratio of political patronage also increased from 49.7 percent in 1996, to 58.9 percent in 1997, 57.5 percent in 1998, and 75.5 percent in 1999. But the ratio was down to 60 percent during the 16th national election.

The lawmakers of the Grand National Party generally depended on the registered sponsors, especially the corporation sponsors before the launch of the DJ administration but the political patronage of the corporation sponsors has drastically dropped during this administration.

On the contrary, the lawmakers of the New Millennium Democratic Party had significantly increased political patronage from corporation sponsors since the party took the political power, showing the deep influence of the political power on the political sponsorship. Meanwhile, in the face-to-face interview with 70 runners for the national election, many lawmakers in active service revealed that they had political funds from the related businesses or organizations during the election period 2-3 times more than other seasons.

Park Sung-Won swpark@donga.com