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[Editorial] Better Receive “Special Probe to Aides Scandal” to Play Fair

[Editorial] Better Receive “Special Probe to Aides Scandal” to Play Fair

Posted November. 07, 2003 23:10,   


The special prosecutor bill designed for investigating corruption allegations of President Roh Moo-hyun’s aides was passed through the Legislation and Judiciary Committee of the National Assembly and handed to the main Assembly session. As long as the majority Grand National Party (GNP) sticks to its’ aim for special prosecution, it is certain that the bill will be approved in the main session. If that is the case, it is reasonable that the president and Uri Party must accept it.

So far, we have stressed in this column that the suspicions on illegal funds of presidential campaign should be first led by the prosecutor’s investigation. We have pointed out that the right thing was to consider a special probe after having confirmed the investigation results by the prosecution. The reason was that there could be a possible political intention of hiding one’s corruption and disturbing the search by mentioning special probes in the middle of the prosecutor’s investigation.

However, now that the majority Grand National Party decided to designate the prosecution for investigating the presidential election funds including SK Group’s slush funds, but in separation from the president aides’ corruption scandal issue, there is no justification to the president putting a veto on the proposal. Hasn’t the president already expressed that he himself would be willing to accept the political agreement if they assign the targets for probing? As time goes by, suspicions are snowballing. Taking the example of Choi Do-sul’s case, a new allegation was recently revealed that he had received a large sum of money from the Busan Chamber of Commerce and Industry. The Millennium Democratic Party insisted that all these funds should be some type of congratulation money for winning an election. Money for congratulating the victory of election is largely different from that for the presidential campaign.

In this situation, letting the special prosecutors investigate the aides of the president will lessen the burden of the prosecution. If the special prosecutors take charge of the aides’ scandal, and if the prosecution handles the presidential election funds separately, it will be more transparent and make less of an argument on the fairness of investigation. The ostensible reason why the GNP has been uncooperative on the probe of presidential election funds so far was that the prosecution’s search lost its’ balance on the presidential aides’ scandal. However, this assertion will not be persuasive any more once the two different cases separate from each other.

More importantly, it must be a good opportunity to thoroughly eradicate the illegal political fund cases. Whether the subject of investigation is the prosecution or the special prosecutors is actually a secondary question. No matter who will be the subject of investigation, all they have to do is just unveil the truth.