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Mandatory Service Term To Be Lowered for Civil Defense Drill Participants

Mandatory Service Term To Be Lowered for Civil Defense Drill Participants

Posted January. 13, 2003 22:53,   


The mandatory service period in the Forces for Civil Defense Drills will be shortened. Therefore, applicable Korean citizens will have to participate in the drills until the age of 42. In addition, various "Affirmative Action type" initiatives will be introduced. Thus, the central government has to set aside certain employment quotas for people from certain localities or with disabilities, and women.

These announcements became know during the Jan. 13th briefing by Ministry of Government Administration and Home Affairs to the Presidential Committee.

The ministry verified, "Now, Korean citizens have to serve for the drill up to the age of 45. We will lower it to 42 by revising relevant laws. The shortening in service term will lead to reduction of 980,000 troops in the future." It was one of the campaign promises of President-elect Roh Moo-hyun.

The ministry also promised to widen the application of the current locality quota system to employment of administrative, tax and correctional government workers of 9th level. The system is now applied only to hiring 9th-level government employees who handle matters regarding information and technology.

Accordingly, once the laws are revised, those who wish to have a 9th-level government job shall maintain legal residence in the region where the offices they want to work for are located.

In addition, affirmative-action type initiatives will be more vigorously enforced. Thus, the current quota for female senior officials of 5th or more level will be increased from the current 4.8% to 10% by the year of 2006. Furthermore, the government will have to hire more handicapped people. Therefore, the people with disabilities, currently constituting 1.58%, will occupy 2% of the government workforce by 2006. More technicians will be hired from the current portion of 23.7% to 30% by the same year.

To facilitate the relegation process from the central government to localities, the ministry plans to organize a special presidential commission, and modify the relevant laws.

On the other hand, another special commission, consisting of government officials and civilian experts, will be formed to review various options and ways to reorganize government agencies.

Hyun-Doo Lee ruchi@donga.com