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Heated Controversy Over Kim`s Responsibility for Failure to Attract Winter Olympics

Heated Controversy Over Kim`s Responsibility for Failure to Attract Winter Olympics

Posted July. 14, 2003 21:44,   


A special committee which had been set up to attract the Winter Olympics to Pyongchang held a general meeting on July 14th to discuss over whether to put Vice Chairman of the IOC Kim Woon-yong on the Ethics Committee in the National Assembly. Mr. Kim has been arguably accused of obstructing the attraction activities to run for a position in the IOC.

The Grand National Party (GNP) tried hard to appeal Mr. Kim`s responsibility for not succeeding in attracting the event to the Vice President (Choi Man-lip) and General Director (Choi Seung-ho) of the attraction committee.

On the other hand, the Millennium Democratic Party (MDP) focused on minimizing such blame on Mr.Kim saying, “This kind of controversy will foreshadow our image as one of the strongest nation in the sports arena.”

A GNP member Choi Don-woong said, “I personally heard Kim tell me that Pyongchang would be available for the 2014 winter Olympics. Given that Kim has not been attempting to have his successor in his job for the past 17 years, I think that he is more focused on running for his position in the IOC rather than on attracting Pyongchang as the next winter Olympics site.”

Another GNP member Lee Hae-bong said, “A lot of sports figures testified that Kim took an arbitrary and exclusive position on this issue. If this proved to be true, wasn`t there any problem between Kim and the special attraction committee in the process?”

Vice President of the Committee Choi Man-lip said, “If Kim had come forward more actively to attract the event this time, we could have pulled it.” He testified that an IOC member told him that Kim persuaded him not to vote for Pyongchang.”

General Director of the Committee Choi Seung-ho said, “It was so clear that Kim was passive in attracting Pyongchang, so all the people there were so angry with him at that time.”

On the other hand, a MDP member Lee Chang-bok said, “If there were any wrongdoings, we just had to adjust them not to accuse him.”

Another MDP member Kim Kyung-chun said, “It is not desirable to criticize one person without having any definite evidence in terms of national benefits as well as personal pride.”

Jong-Hoon Lee Seung-Heon Lee taylor55@donga.com ddr@donga.com