Independent lawmaker Ahn Cheol-soo said Tuesday he will launch a new political party in March and field candidates for all 17 municipal heads at the June 4 elections. This years` local elections will be a confrontation by the ruling Saenuri Party, main opposition Democratic Party and the new party headed by Ahn. The Democratic Party and Ahn`s party will be locked in a fierce head-on competition to take opposition lead.
At a press conference in Jeju Island, Ahn said, "I have come to a conclusion that a new political force must come forth," adding, "We should no longer seek after politics that adheres to the past, hold ideology and geography as hostage and asks for choosing one of the two. The flip-flop of pledges to abolish the candidate nomination system is no longer acceptable." "My goal is to make a party that is sustainable and to change Korea`s politics into a productive competition structure. It will not be a party for the sake of election." he said. On plans of the launch of the party, Yoon Yeo-joon, chairman of New Politics Committee, a preparatory organization for the new party, said, "After launching the preparatory committee for the establishment of the new party in February, we will establish new party by the end of March, and field candidates for all 17 municipal heads."
Political landscape has begun bucking. Saenuri Party Rep. Chung Mong-joon who said he would not run for Seoul mayor told a Dong-A Ilbo reporter, "We need to join efforts considering all possibilities."