[EDITORIALS]A close look at Roh’s staff picks

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[EDITORIALS]A close look at Roh’s staff picks

Criticism has arisen over the Blue House’s recent appointments of its public affairs senior secretary and the secretary-general of the Board of Audit and Inspection.
Many wonder if it was appropriate for a university professor, who led a radical move against certain media outlets while supporting others, to be named as a senior presidential public affairs secretary. Questions have also been raised about the fairness of a high school junior of the president being named as the secretary-general of the Board of Audit and Inspection skipping two civil service levels within six months and three within three years.
The Blue House justified the appointment of the new public affairs senior secretary. “It does not matter what kinds of civic movements the new secretary had led because that is what had happened in the past. Since she joined the Blue House, she will try her best to promote national governance and presidential affairs,” the Blue House said.
Regarding the appointment of the secretary-general of the Board of Audit and Inspection, the Blue House said that the personnel appointment committee simply accepted the audit board head’s recommendation that the official was highly praised for his performance by his colleagues. Choosing staff for his administration is a presidential right. The president’s choices to form his secretariat in particular should be respected most times. But the direction of a policy can be decided by the appointee. Appointing a non-specialist therefore also amplified doubts.
The Blue House has announced multiple candidates for the secretary-general of the prosecution and the head of the National Tax Service, saying it wants the public to evaluate its choice of candidates. We wonder why the same process was not done for the secretary-general of the audit board, a position as important as the other two.
Despite the side effects of internal conflict, the Blue House decided to announce multiple candidates to prevent recurrence of disgraces such as the appointment of Lee Ki-jun as education minister last month. It is strange that the secretary-general of the Board of Audit and Inspection was an exception.
The Roh administration established the system by forming the senior secretary for personnel affairs and made the personnel affairs committee’s recommendations a mandatory step. It is time to check if the system is malfunctioning or not.

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