Seoul Political Parties Enlist Former Samsung and Hyundai Executives for Upcoming Elections

SEOUL — In a strategic move ahead of April's general elections, Seoul's ruling and main opposition parties announced on Monday the recruitment of high-profile executives from two of South Korea's largest corporations.

According to Yonhap News Agency, the ruling People Power Party (PPP) has welcomed Koh Dong-jin, a former president of Samsung Electronics Co., while the main opposition Democratic Party (DP) has brought on board Kong Young-woon, a former president at Hyundai Motor Co.

During a ceremony at the National Assembly, PPP leader Han Dong-hoon showcased a notable gesture by using a Galaxy smartphone, instead of his usual iPhone, to take a selfie with Koh. This action highlighted the party's enthusiasm in securing Koh's participation. Han lauded Koh as a symbol of South Korea's information technology development over the past four decades, particularly emphasizing his role in elevating the Samsung Galaxy brand.

Koh, known for his contributions to the Samsung Galaxy brand, is widely expected to run for a parliamentary seat in Suwon, a city south of Seoul and a key location for Samsung Electronics. However, Koh has not confirmed specific details, stating that any decision regarding his candidacy will follow discussions with the party's leadership.

Simultaneously, the DP announced the recruitment of Kong Young-woon, a journalist-turned-businessman who played a significant role at Hyundai Motor Co. The party credited Kong with establishing an overseas policy team that enhanced the company's global supply chain network and response to international issues. DP Chairman Lee Jae-myung expressed his anticipation for Kong's contributions, especially in the areas of production base and business policy. Kong has expressed his intention to run for parliament and will decide on a constituency after further discussions with the party.

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