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Revolving door practice still rampant despite pledged reform

Revolving door practice still rampant despite pledged reform

Posted February. 24, 2014 07:18,   


Despite the government having decided to devise a “measure to root out the revolving door practice of effectively naming key posts at state-run firms,” a number of people from the political circle have been named heads and auditors of state-run companies in recent months, causing a setback in the Park Geun-hye administration’s commitment to public sector reform.

The Korea Resources Corp. said on Sunday that it named Hong Pyo-geun, 61, formerly member of the Advancement and Unification Party’s supreme council, as its executive auditor. Hong served as co-head for woman voters at the Saenuri Party’s central election preparatory committee when Saenuri was merged with the Advancement and Unification Party ahead of the presidential election in 2012. An executive auditor at a state-run company, aiming for auditing sloppy management and corruptions, is recommended by the strategy and finance minister and appointed by the president.

At a briefing on its new year’s work plan on Thursday, the Strategy and Finance Ministry said, “It will devise a measure to root out the revolving door,” but a senior member of the ruling camp has been named auditor of the state-run company only three days later. Since the previous auditor retired in August last year, the Korea Resources Corp. had been delaying appointment of his replacement until recently, saying, “There is no eligible person,” and recently conducted recruitment anew.

Senior members of the ruling camp are being inaugurated as heads and auditors at other state-run firms in succession as well. On Sunday, the Korea East-West Power Co. appointed as executive auditor Kang Yo-shik, 53, who served as chairman of the SNS communications advisory committee of the Saenuri Party’s central election committee in the 2012 presidential election. Earlier on Friday, Lee Sang-kwon, 59, former Saenuri Party lawmaker, was appointed as president of Korea Electrical Safety Corp.

Watchers say that since the terms of state-run firms’ heads and auditors, who were appointed en mass in 2011 during the Lee Myung-bak administration, are set to expire this year, more people from the political circle will be named to take those posts based on political favoritism.