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`Fired Public Servants Working for Gov`t Workers` Unions`

`Fired Public Servants Working for Gov`t Workers` Unions`

Posted September. 24, 2009 08:33,   


Fired public officials are serving as key members of government employee unions, the Public Administration and Security Ministry said yesterday.

According to a ministry report submitted to ruling Grand National Party lawmaker Shin Ji-ho, 91 former public servants work for the Korean Government Employees’ Union and 31 for the Korean Democratic Government Employees’ Union.

They were among public officials who were fired for union activities through 2005, when government employees’ unions were illegal.

The Korean Government Employees’ Union has 16 dismissed officials including its vice president Jeong Tong-il. The other union has seven such officials including policy division director Jeong Yong-hae.

According to labor law, when a person not employed by a company conducts union activities, a union can be abolished under a government correction order.

The report also said, “Dismissed workers at the unions led anti-government demonstrations, such as protests against the resumption of U.S. beef imports, in cooperation with civic organizations.”

The government knew this in the first half of the year, but issued correction orders Aug. 24. Worse, the Labor Ministry requested that unions remove only some of the illegal members though it received the full list from the Public Administration and Security Ministry.

The government is considering shutting down unions if they fail to dismiss illegal members within 30 days.

Lawmaker Shin said, “Dismissed workers led the unions toward involvement in illegal activities by taking the lead in joining the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions and consolidating the two government workers’ unions.”

“The Labor Ministry, which was accustomed to pro-labor administrative work under left-leaning administrations, aggravated the problem by failing to take stern action early.”

Separately, the government will punish the consolidated union of government workers if it is found to have manipulated the vote for joining the confederation.

An official at the presidential office said, “If evidence showing illegal activity is obtained, we will not only urge the union to discipline the members in question but also prosecute them. We will also investigate the vote count.”

Justice Minister Kim Kyung-han, Public Administration and Security Minister-designate Lee Dal-gon and Labor Minister Lee Young-hee said in a joint statement, “We will sternly deal with the government employees’ union under law if it is engaged in illegal activities.”

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