&#91EDITORIALS&#93Hands-off policy for now

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[EDITORIALS]Hands-off policy for now

We regret that some civic organizations are confronting the presidential transition committee over the qualifications of one of its members. The role of civic groups is to review the government policies and criticize them if necessary. But it is tantamount to intervention in the panel's work to demand the dismissal of a member based on questions about his past activities.

At a forum organized by civic groups working for education reform some participants attacked a transition team member who was present: "Education reform of the Roh Moo-hyun government is askew because the first button is in the wrong hole. He is not a suitable person for education reform." They said that considering this person's past activities he is the least qualified person to promote education reform and that his selection suggested outside intervention.

We have no detailed information on the committee member's past nor do we know how the committee members were selected. But we consider it improper for civic groups to raise questions on the qualifications of committee members. We believe that the committee members were selected through screening procedures and each one of them is trying to grasp the situation of the field he is assigned to. We think it proper that an evaluation and criticism of the committee members should be made only after they present their policy proposals. Rejecting someone who does not share your ideology is wrong.

The behavior of civic groups is under scrutiny. A few days ago, Mr. Roh said at a gathering of civic activists, "Without the accumulated efforts of the civic groups, my election would not have been possible." He has emphasized a partnership with the civic groups and many civic activists are taking part in the transition team's functions. There is a very good chance that their reform policies will be adopted by the new government. At a time like this, it is important that the civic groups maintain their position of checking, watching and presenting alternatives while keeping a distance from political power.

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