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UNDP Throws Its Support Behind President Roh’s Remarks

Posted January. 29, 2008 07:36,   


President Roh Moo-hyun voiced his clear opposition to the government reform bill proposed by President-elect Lee Myung-bak’s transition team at a press conference on Jan. 28. Lee’s transition team and the Grand National Party responded by criticizing President Roh of arrogance and self-importance.

Lee Dong-gwan, spokesperson for the transition team, pinpointed that merging inefficient ministries to create an efficient and productive government is a global trend and has the citizen’s cooperation and approval.

“Since the inauguration of the current participatory government, the number of civil servants has increased by 65,000 and created 52 committees which boosted the national debt by 170 trillion won,” spokesman Lee said. “It’s our hope that President Roh thinks about the future of our country and leaves office in a manner that is in accordance with his position as president,” said Lee.

Joo Ho-young, a spokesman for President-elect Lee, said that when the president-elect was briefed about President Roh’s interview, he made no comment. The president-elect called Yoo In-tae, chairman of the Government Administration and Local Autonomy Committee of the National Assembly, to explain the need and the reasons to restructure the government, and to request the cooperation of the National Assembly.

The GNP warned that if the nation adopts President Roh’s perspective, which seeks to divide by value and philosophy, the transfer of power will not be smooth. “President Roh is making unsuitable remarks with just one month left in his term.”

According to the GNP, the ballot count from the recent presidential election of 5.32 million is justification for President Roh to cooperate with the handover of political power. Although the bill proposed by the new government does not accord with President Roh’s philosophy, he should cooperate in order to secure a respectable page in South Korea’s history books.

On the other hand, the United New Democratic Party expressed sympathy with President Roh’s remarks, stating that his comments do not differ from the public opinion.

The Democratic Party said that raising problems with the abolition of several ministries is valid. However, it added that to hold press conferences on the issue when discussions on the matter of government restructuring have just begun in the National Assembly is inappropriate.

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