[EDITORIALS]Idle talk or a real problem?

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[EDITORIALS]Idle talk or a real problem?

The selection procedure for the first chairman of the integrated stock exchange is falling apart. Since the candidates who were recommended by the selection committee, composed of members of the private sector, have withdrawan one after another, the whole procedure is back to square one.
The integrated stock exchange is a private institution with a public nature created by merging the Korea Stock Exchange, the Kosdaq and the Korea Futures Exchange, and is expected to launch at the end of January. There were controversies over how to merge the three and where to locate it, and an agreement was reached after painful negotiations. Now that the integration work is in progress, the selection of its first chairman has hit an obstacle at the recommendation stage.
A rumor says the intervention of the Blue House caused the problem. The selection procedure dictates that a private sector committee recommends three candidates, then the integration promotion committee recommends one or two of them to the stockholders’ meeting for a vote.
Following the procedure, the recommendation committee selected three candidates and sent the names to the integration promotion committee. But the Blue House is said to have applied the brakes, wanting more choices. The three candidates are all reportedly former Ministry of Finance and Economy officials.
It is understandable that the Blue House frowns at them, because concerns about former officials of the ministry taking posts as financial company presidents are very strong. But if they have no disqulifications for the post and if the recommendations were made through proper procedures, there is no reason for the Blue House to intervene. Vice Minister Kim Kwang-lim of the Finance and Economy Ministry said, “The selection of the chairman of the integrated stock exchange is not a subject to discuss with the Blue House.”
More serious is a rumor that it all started because the person the Blue House had in mind, considering his regional connections, was not included among the three candidates. If that is true, the transparancy and fairness in personnel appointments of public businesses and public institutes that the participatory government repeatedly emphasized is void. The Blue House and the government must be faithful to the principles of personnel policy so that there is no further confusion and rumors over personnel appointments.
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