NATIONAL

President Moon to request Cho Kuk’s Assembly hearing report amid conflict

By Kim Bo-gyung
  • Published : Sept 3, 2019 - 16:30
  • Updated : Sept 3, 2019 - 18:32

South Korean President Moon Jae-in has asked the National Assembly to resend its hearing report for embattled Justice Minister nominee Cho Kuk by the end of this week, a top presidential aide said Tuesday.

The request comes in the face of the opposition bloc’s vehement objection to Cho, which has only deepened since his unprecedented press conference Monday.

“President Moon Jae-in has requested the National Assembly to resend the confirmation hearing reports on six nominees including Justice Minister nominee Cho Kuk. The president requested the reports to be sent by the Friday,” Yoon Do-han, senior secretary for public communication, said.

“President Moon will return to the country on Friday from a tour of three Southeast Asian nations, and decide whether to appoint the nominees.”

Moon, who arrived in Myanmar on Tuesday as part of his six-day trip to three Southeast Asian countries, can appoint Cho to the post on Saturday if the National Assembly does not respond to the request by the given deadline.

The time frame is roughly a week shorter than the date of Sept. 12, sought by main opposition Liberty Korea Party.

Main opposition Liberty Korea Party Floor Leader Na Kyung-won (center) speaks in an urgent press briefing Tuesday held to rebut Justice Minister nominee Cho Kuk’s press conference at the National Assembly. (Yonhap)

Despite heightened discontent on the method and format of Cho’s press briefing at the National Assembly, the ruling party viewed that the controversy surrounding him and his family has been more or less settled.

The main opposition Liberty Korea Party criticized Cho’s press conference as a “concert that shows disdain for the National Assembly” and just a “public excuse show.”

It continued to stress the need to hold a parliamentary confirmation hearing for Cho and warned Cheong Wa Dae of pushing ahead with his nomination without a hearing.

“Nominee Cho, who endures because of his greed for the post, has proved himself disqualified. He ambushed the National Assembly like occupation forces and held a press conference, but paradoxically the nominee cemented the need for his resignation,” main opposition Floor Leader Na Kyung-won said at the party’s urgent media meet at the National Assembly.

“Nominee Cho must have Aladdin’s genie. His daughter was named as a lead writer for a research paper even though it wasn’t asked for and received a scholarship out of nowhere even though she didn’t apply for it. He invested over 1 billion won ($822,000) in a private equity fund not knowing what a PE is and it won a government supply contract,” Na said.

Mirroring the main opposition party, the minor conservative Bareunmirae Party’s Floor Leader Oh Shin-hwan called Cho a “suspect involved in crimes” and labeled the conference “violent,” noting the party will seek to start a parliamentary investigation and special investigation.

“Cho Kuk’s one-man show has amplified allegations and confirmed his incompetence. Scrap Cho Kuk. That is the demand of candle lights and a warning from the public,” Center-left Democracy and Peace Party spokesperson Moon Jung-sun said. 

By Kim Bo-gyung (lisakim425@heraldcorp.com)


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