SEOUL, Sept. 28 (Yonhap) — President Moon Jae-in asked the National Assembly to send him a report on the education minister nominee’s confirmation hearing by Monday, his spokesman said, a procedural step required before Moon goes ahead with the appointment.
Moon nominated Rep. Yoo Eun-hae of the ruling Democratic Party late last month to serve concurrently as deputy prime minister for social affairs and education minister. If formally appointed, Yoo would be the first female deputy prime minister.
But the main opposition Liberty Korea Party has raised objections, claiming Yoo is unfit for the job due to a series of ethical lapses, including false registration of her daughter’s address to get her admitted to a better elementary school.
The parliamentary education committee held a confirmation hearing on Sept. 19, but failed to adopt a report on its outcome due to opposition objections. By law, the National Assembly cannot reject a minister’s nomination, and refusal to adopt a confirmation hearing report is the most it can do to express objections.
Regardless of whether a confirmation hearing report is adopted or not, the president can go ahead and appoint the nominee if the National Assembly fails to comply with his request for the report.
But such an appointment without parliamentary blessing could be a political burden for Moon.
The ruling party says it will try to convene a meeting of the education committee on Monday in a last-ditch attempt to adopt the report. But the main opposition party opposes tabling the issue on the agenda, let alone adopting the report.
Source: Yonhap News Agency