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Uri Official Says Chung Should Resign

Posted May. 29, 2006 03:00,   


The Uri Party, which is now facing a crushing defeat in the May 31 local election, is involved in serious internal discords over Chung Dong-young’s statement that he would push forward with political restructuring after the local election.

Uri Party top member Kim Doo-gwan, a South Gyeongsang Province governor candidate, urged Chung’s resignation in an emergency press interview at the South Gyeongsang Province office in Changwon, South Gyeongsang Province yesterday, saying that “those who disgrace the party for their own political prospects should be sensible of their responsibilities before referring to political restructuring. I request him to clarify his own position before the local election day.”

Kim urged Chung’s secession from the party as well, saying that “the Uri Party, the ruling party, has been reduced to the party that lost even the nation’s sympathy, let alone the nation’s support. Those who spoil the founding spirit of a party have no reason to belong to the party.”

Lee Gang-chul, presidential political affairs aide, spoke against Chung through a personal statement on May 27 that “he should reflect on what he had done, rather than evade the nation’s reproach through political expediency, including political restructuring and party mergers, which should not be used for political purposes.”

As Kim, who had been presidential political affairs aide, and Lee are pro-Roh officials close to Roh Moo-hyun, discord between the leading faction, including Chung’s, and pro-Roh faction will likely grow more serious over management group resignation and political restructuring.

It was reported that Chung refuted Kim’s request for resignation, saying that it damaged the party. Chung gave a call to Choi Chul-kook, South Gyeongsang Province committee chairman, to deliver a message to Kim that “we should not get fellow politicians mortified nor do what cannot be helpful at the last moment ahead of the election.”

Jung-Hun Kim jnghn@donga.com mindy@donga.com