Citizens' Groups Accuse Culture Ministry of Manipulating Public OpinionA controversy has sprung up after the Ministry of Culture and Tourism immediately refuted citizens' groups claims that the Ministry manipulated and distorted what public opinion truely is on the merger of youth policy organizations.
The Citizens' Coalition for Better Government and the Christian Ethics Movement Korea insisted in their press release on June 28 that, "There is the belief that the public service personnel of the Culture Ministry manipulated what public opinion was by excerting its power over the organizations which fall under its sway."
These two groups announced that, "It is believed that the Culture Ministry appeased or threatened the religions sector, professors, and citizens' groups which supported the merger of youth policy organizations for the establishment of an independent organization forcing them to approve a plan in which the Culture Ministry oversees operations related to youth policy."
However, the two groups did not present any direct evidences to back up their claims.
In regard to this announcement, Yoo Jin-ryong, the press secretary of the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, protested saying that, "All the doubts raised by the citizens' groups, including the suspicions of phone calls complainting to the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Korea by a high-ranking official of the Culture Ministry, are not true."
The Ministry of Culture and Tourism announced that they will "officially make complaints to the two citizens' organization as well as bring a lawsuit against the press company which reported the beliefs of the citizens' groups one-sidedly."
by Park Shin-hong