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Saenuri leader calls for nominating PM from Jeolla region

Saenuri leader calls for nominating PM from Jeolla region

Posted April. 25, 2015 07:24,   


“I have a suggestion: If the current Prime Minister Lee Wan-koo is replaced, please nominate a person from the Jeolla provinces as Prime Minister,” said ruling Saenuri Party Chairman Kim Moo-sung on Thursday. The calling for nominating Prime Minister from Jeolla provinces came from the by-election campaign in West Ul district of Gwangju, on April 29. Kim said, “Rep. Lee Jung-hyun, a member of the party`s supreme council will make a great Prime Minister. Or, if Saenuri candidate Jeong Seung wins the election and becomes a supreme council member, he will serve as a great Prime Minister.”

The remarks intended to win more votes during the by-election in Gwangju and the cause for his argument is to integrate the divided public, which sounds nice. Actually, prime minister candidates mentioned as a replacement of Lee include politicians from the Jeolla province, such as Korea Integration Committee President Han Gwang-ok, former Prime Minister Kim Hwang-sik and Han Deok-soo. Some party insiders have a different view over the argument. They interpret that it is an attempt to rule out the next promising presidential candidates such as former Gyeonggi Province Governor Kim Moon-soo or former Seoul City Mayor Oh Se-hoon.

Due to the Sung Wan-jong and resource diplomacy corruption scandal, people say that incumbent Prime Minister Lee and South Gyeongsang Province Governor Hong Joon-pyo have lost supporters and have been falling behind in the race for the presidency. If the next presidential candidates such as Kim or Oh becomes prime minister, the position of the leader of the Saenuri Party, known as the front-runner of the ruling party, may be threatened. Kim who has an image of generous manly man, would say “it is an absurd interpretation.” But Kim’s comment to reporters that it was out of his true heart,” is not accepted as it literally sounds. That’s how to interpret a politician’s saying in general.

New Politics Alliance for Democracy (NPAD) Chairman Moon Jae-in found himself in hot water when he called for nominating a prime minister candidate from the Jeolla provinces in January. Moon said, “President Park should have nominated a prime minister from the Jeolla provinces,” while a prime minister candidate from the Chungcheong provinces was already designated.

The NPAD chairman was surprised by strong protest from voters in the Chungcheong provinces, who were asking, “What? Is he saying that a politician from the Chungcheong region should not serve as prime minister?” Internal criticism was also strong that the chairman created unfavorable situation by himself while trying to please voters in the Jeolla provinces, which accounted for more than half of seats for representatives, ahead of Feb. 8 Convention. Unlike Moon, Kim avoided protest from a certain region as he argued "prime minister from the Jeolla provinces" before Lee was nominated. However, it still remains a question whether Jeolla residents will vote for the Saenuri Party at this upcoming by-election as Kim called for nominating a prime minister candidate from Jeolla Province.