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National Assembly does its work right against railway strike
DECEMBER 31, 2013 05:48  
Leading Saenuri Party Rep. Kim Moo-sung and main opposition Democratic Party Rep. Park Ki-choon played a decisive role in having unionized KORAIL workers end their prolonged strike. As members of the National Assembly뭩 Land and Transport Committee, the two lawmakers were in close ties since the 18th National Assembly as floor leader of Saenuri Party and deputy flood leader of Democratic Party.

The mood was intense Sunday when behind-the-scene negotiations were taking place. At 11:20 a.m., Democratic Party Chairman Kim Han-gil urgently summoned Park and gave him a special order to resolve the strike issue. Park called Rep. Kim who was in Busan, his local district, for help. He believed that Kim, a five-term lawmaker, was the right man.

Kim also wanted to help as a mediator for the parliament, and immediately came to Seoul via KTX. After devising a preliminary agreement plan for withdrawal of strike based on setting up a subcommittee in the Land and Transport Committee, he sent it to Kim Myung-hwan, head of KORAIL labor union, and got a definite answer from him. By 9 p.m., Rep. Kim and Park met at the latter`s office and elaborated details of the plan for three hours. They agreed to compose the subcommittee with the same number of leading and opposition party members, and agreed that railway union should withdraw strikes immediately after the subcommittee is made and return to work.

Kim called Saenuri Party floor leader Choi Kyung-hwan and senior presidential secretary for economic affairs Cho Won-dong for mediation. Park reported the progress to the Democratic Party chairman. By 11 p.m., the two people visited the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions headquarter in central Seoul to meet KORAIL union leader Kim and stayed there for an hour. KORAIL`s Kim signed the agreement and the two members left the office. The final agreement was made public at 11 a.m. after it passed the Democratic Party general meeting and Saenuri Party supreme council meeting. The 22-hour long negotiations were at last finalized.

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