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[Editorial] “Practical” Keynote of National Governance Should Remain Intact

[Editorial] “Practical” Keynote of National Governance Should Remain Intact

Posted January. 09, 2005 22:52,   


A group of Cheong Wa Dae officials including chief of secretary Kim Woo-sik announced their will to resign, taking responsibility for the recent stir created by the resignation of Lee Ki-jun, the former vice prime minister for education. Whatever the reason, it is obvious that they would have no words to explain their actions, now that their insufficient personnel examinations and alleged favoritism have caused trouble to the president, who publicly resolved to make a fresh start in the New Year. This case should serve as a wake-up call for the government to reshuffle the overall personnel system of Cheong Wa Dae.

Yet, it doesn’t follow that practical national governance, advocated by the president, should change, too. At the root of vice prime minister Lee’s resignation lies his much-disputed integrity. It should never be interpreted in ideological and political terms. President Roh Moo-hyun, right after appointing him, stressed, “The key to improving this nation’s education is securing the competitive edge of universities and restructuring them,” adding, “Universities are and should be an industry.”

No one would dispute his diagnosis and prescription for a cure. We believe a person who can act on the president’s ideas despite the current confusion over vice economic prime minister Lee’s resignation should replace him. The last thing that should happen is a recommendation of a person in the name of the ruling circles’ collective pursuit for reform, whose qualifications most of the public would doubt. This nation’s education should no longer be the subject of their experiments.

The same is also true for other domains of national governance. The President, while addressing the nation marking the New Year, put much store in practicing his plans: resuscitating the economy and the public livelihood; co-existence and solidarity; and concession and compromise. During a dinner meeting with the ruling Uri Party leadership late last year, he also asserted that the four reform bills, including the one on the national security law, “have to be handled step by step.” In so doing, he made it clear that practicality would be his keynote of national governance in this New Year. If so, he should not step back in any case.

Some within the ruling party and extra-governmental organizations are reportedly displaying their opposition to his practical line explicitly in the wake of the failed appointment case. Some are even said to assert, “We knew he, being from a corrupt established circle, would fail,” a remark all of us should particularly note. This nation, after all, has already seen how much trouble their pursuit of the same code that opposes social group members against one another, doing good to no one, caused over the past two years.