Suspicious mindsSkepticism surrounding the list of universities approved to set up law schools needs to be cleared up urgently.
There are suspicions that a former senior secretary of public relations for the Blue House, Yoon Seung-yong, intervened in the preliminary approval process.
People have also expressed serious doubts that the Blue House organized a taskforce for moving forward the nation’s law school plan.
It seems that politicians intervened in the appointment of the members for the legal education committee.
Some suspect that political circles allegedly wielded influence over the process of managing the ratio of students between the universities in the Seoul metropolitan area and provincial universities.
It is also said that the timing of the announcement was moved forward nine months. Therefore, preliminary approval of the list of law schools is thought to be politically and strategically motivated.
Yoon said he intervened in the approval process for the law schools. “I would like to report to the nation in detail all the circumstances of the law school approval process,” he said.
When his words caused a controversy, he quickly added, “Ahead of the April general elections, I apologize for being careless; I spoke rashly.”
However, he gave us such detailed information that we cannot accept his apology. He did not offer groundless stories.
We cannot believe that someone who served as the former top secretary for the presidential office would lie so brazenly, especially when we can easily find out whether he is telling the truth.
Yesterday, one day ahead of the Education Ministry’s confirmation, professors and students staged a fierce rally. Protesters from Chosun University marched along Sejongno, central Seoul, saying that approval of the law schools was flawed and should be annulled. Five hundred professors and students from Sun Moon University came to the capital to stage a protest.
Against this backdrop, the Korea Law Professors Association held an emergency meeting. The group said the incoming government should look into this issue when it takes office, adding that the approval process should be completely overhauled.
A transparent and fair approval process is a prerequisite. Investigations into Yoon’s recent disclosures should be made before the list of approved law school is confirmed.