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State Auditor Digs Up Dirt on Nat`l Housing Corp.

Posted August. 14, 2008 06:32,   


Korea National Housing Corp. reportedly did not retain the hiring records on its employees and interns for the mandatory five-year period, disposing the records after just a year.

The Board of Audit and Inspection and the company said in news releases yesterday that the corporation hired 794 employees and 441 interns from 2003 to last year. The company threw away all hiring test records including answer sheets and scoring notes.

Original copies of essay answer sheets and scoring cards should be kept in file. The documents are necessary if those who fail sue over the hiring exam or when probes seek to know if unqualified applicants were hired.

Discovering the arbitrary disposal of the hiring documents, the government auditor demanded that staff at the corporation’s human resources department be reprimanded.

“Our office space is so limited, and the overhaul of our organizational structure has made it too complicated to manage. That was why we disposed of them,” the corporation said.

Despite the explanation, the company is suspected of intentionally discarding the records to cover up dirty practices. Since the essay exam is not required for interns, there is no way to know if interns who became full-time employees were qualified at the time of their hiring as interns.

Management also put all interns on payroll within a year of taking them on as interns.

In addition, some directors and employees are under suspicion of bribery, allegedly taking hundreds of millions of won from an engineering contractor.

The corporation also leaked internal classified information to the contractor, whose vice president "Kwon" was a former senior officer at the housing corporation. The contractor allegedly secretly received a dozen bids from the state-run company.

Police suspect Kwon might have used bribes to get the information.

Prior to hiring the former senior officer in 2005, the engineering company had won a couple of bids from the corporation. Afterwards, it won 17 contracts amounting to 25 billion won (25 million U.S. dollars).

A police source said, “About 10 housing corporation officers have admitted to taking bribes from Kwon. In our probe, we found more than 30 corporation employees were involved. We are looking into their banking records and call logs.”

Authorities stormed the housing corporation’s headquarters for search, and are investigating 10 other individuals.

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