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[Editorial] How Will Roh Lead the Nation?

Posted September. 28, 2003 23:10,   


President ROh`s first choice to become the top state auditor was rejected. In the new political landscape characterized by four parties, the problem is how he could administer state affairs. If the president does not show his political competence, it will be difficult to lead the nation.

However, the government`s response to the rejection makes us raise the question: Can we really expect the new government for such political competence? Cheong Wa Dae, the presidential office, is blaming both the Grand National Party (GNP) and the Millennium Democratic Party (MDP) for hobbling national administration. The new party, formed by former MDP members loyal to Mr. Roh, is cornering MDP members, saying that emotion should not intervene in state affairs.

The government should have look back on whether there was not a problem in the appointment of the nation`s top auditor and whether they did their best to pass the bill through the Assembly before the Assembly`s vote took place. Rather, the government is just blaming the rejection of the bill on others. It is not the way a minority government should do. In fact, it is said that before the vote, the president did not ask the leaders of ruling and opposition parties for cooperation. Instead of seeking cooperation, Roh stimulated opposition members in a national news conference, held a day before the National Assembly`s vote took place.

Against this backdrop, Roh is likely to leave the MDP earlier than expected. He should take a clear position in order to prevent a political chaos. If he plans not to affiliate himself with any party after defecting from the MDP, he should display new leadership. He ought to explain how he will maintain relationship with the National Assembly and political parties and how he will lead the nation and to ask for help.

The administration should not drift into troubled waters for a long time. The first thing Roh should do is to reassure the public. Ruling and opposition parties have to take responsible attitudes to prevent a catastrophic situation, too.