Go to contents

“Requesting Cooperation for Fair Election to the President”

“Requesting Cooperation for Fair Election to the President”

Posted December. 30, 2003 22:31,   


The Central Election Commission led by Yoo Ji-dahm announced on December 30, “We will ask for the president’s cooperation in fair elections,” regarding his remark on the upcoming two strong party election.

The announcement was at a lower level than an accusation or a warning, which prevented the situation from becoming an unprecedented election law related illegality committed by the president since the establishment of the constitution. However, the decision was analyzed as an actual warning to the president, and the controversy over the president’s involvement in the election would heat up further.

The commission interpreted, “It is hard to decide whether the president’s remark was precisely any source of preliminary election campaign considering comprehensively the speaker, the place of speech, the objects, its reasoning and the regulations in the election law,” regarding the request by the Grand National Party (GNP) and the Millennium Democratic Party to interpret whether or not the remark was preliminary election campaigning.

However, the commission explained the reason for the announcement requesting cooperation, saying, “Considering his position as president and the timing being so near to the general election, the recent remark was attributable to the misunderstanding despite his real intentions.”

In particular, the commission said, “We have agreed that the president’s compliment about a specific candidate at the luncheon with South Gyeongsang province people could have influenced the results of the election even if he did not intend to publicize the candidate,” and added, “We have decided to request the president to keep this in mind when he makes remarks regarding the election from now on.”

President Roh has said, “To vote for the Millennium Democratic Party in the next general election is likely to help the GNP,” at the luncheon on December 24 with secretaries who will run for the general election.

Hong Jun-pyo, chairman of the strategy and planning committee, offered criticism on the issue, “The commission is deserting their responsibility when deciding the clear preliminary election campaigning was not.”

Meanwhile, the National Assembly was to hold an emergency impending question and answer session regarding the president’s remark on the election at the main meeting the same day but has postponed it by request from Rep. Yoo and his absence.

Sung-Won Park swpark@donga.com