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[Editorial] Confirmation Hearing, Part II

Posted August. 16, 2002 22:09,   


Political parties have yet to decide who will sit in a parliamentary hearing to question new prime minister nominee Jang Dae-hwan, although the confirmation hearing is only 9 days ahead. This stands stark contrast to the speedier actions earlier when they quickly moved to form a group of lawmakers only a day after former nominee Jang Sang was named.

It has already been 5 days that the request for confirmation was submitted, but the two rival parties are in a tug of war over who will sit in the hearing. The public is by no means interested in their tit-for-tat battle over power. What people want to know is whether lawmakers ever intend to scrutinize the new nominee for job competence and morality.

Watching them, we cannot but wonder what is going to happen. First, they appear far less committed to the issue that they were last time. Although Jang is suspected of borrowing staggering amounts of money from a commercial bank and buying lands across the country in some dubious ways, the political parties have shown little interest in the suspicion. The delay in forming a hearing committee is, in most part, due to their indifference.

The major concern, however, is that the indifference and delay has resulted from conflict within their own parties. The ruling Millennium Democratic Party is entirely preoccupied with the intra-party debate on launching a new party, while the opposition Grand National Party seems to be reluctant to reject another nominee if they find him ineligible.

They should know, however, that a hearing is one thing and confirmation is another. Besides, there is no need to bother holding a hearing if standards vary depending on nominees. Lawmakers must question Jang Dae-hwan thoroughly as they did against Jang Sang.

This time they will have to look into his job capability as well as morality. To do so, they must form a committee in no time and prepare themselves for the session. The prime minister nominee himself has an obligation to tell the truth regarding raised allegations. It is honest that will win people’s heart in the end.