[EDITORIALS]Just drop the idea of a move

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[EDITORIALS]Just drop the idea of a move

The administration and the Uri Party are reportedly seeking to build a special administrative city as an alternative to relocating the nation’s capital. The plan is to move all administrative bodies to the Chungcheong region except for the Blue House and the National Assembly. The Constitutional Court has said that the capital is where the Blue House and the National Assembly are located. Thus, Uri and President Roh appear to believe that they can haul away nearly the entire government except for those two institutions. Such an interpretation of the constitutional ruling is quibbling.
We wonder if the administration and the party have made sound assessments of the aftermath and ineffectiveness of such a policy, not to mention the enormous expense of construction. The upshot of such a stubborn policy direction will be a nasty aftermath that Koreans will have to live with.
The governing party and the administration must think carefully if it would be acceptable for administrative bodies and the president to be separated so widely, and if the National Assembly and the administration’s proximity would no longer be needed. The economic bureaus of the government are now located in Gwacheon, not far from Seoul, but ministers and other public officials still waste a lot of time on the road between Gwacheon and Seoul.
Moving the ministries to the Chungcheong region, ignoring such a reality, will result in an increase in expense and much less efficiency in the operations of the government.
We are skeptical about how the new administrative city would help in reducing the congestion of the capital region and improving the balanced development of the country. The effect of moving lower-level government bodies to Daejeon has not been very large. Pushing hard a plan of enormous costs with doubtful effectiveness just to please Chungcheong residents is unacceptable. It is more appropriate to discuss a measure to develop the Chungcheong area by other means.
Relocating the capital is not the only option to develop the nation with more balance. Small administrative bodies can be relocated and the government can also build corporate cities and university towns.
It is time to drop the plan to relocate the capital, an attempt objected by the majority of the people. The Roh administration and the Uri Party must stop being so stubborn.
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