Unbefitting our country

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Unbefitting our country

The prosecutors’ office is investigating a whole lot of people who were close to former President Roh Moo-hyun. The vicious cycle of probing the wrongdoings of those who gathered like parasites around a politician in power is repeating itself. On the dock stand Roh’s close friends including his elder brother, Roh Geon-pyeong. Some big-name politicians appear as well. A typical pattern of political corruption floats above the surface. The Roh administration that had boasted of moral purity and reform is being tainted by allegations of conventional shady dealings.

The prosecutor’s office looks at this case as an affair in which Roh’s close friends intervened in the sale of Sejong Securities to Nong-hyup. They allegedly collected huge kickbacks and illegally profited from stock investments using insider information. The investigation is focused on the nature and whereabouts of 8 billion won ($5.5 million) that was handed over to Jeong Hwa-sam, former CEO of Zephyrus Golf Club, and his brother Jeong Gwang-yong.

How Park Yeon-cha, the chairman of Taekwang Industrial and a Roh supporter, could invest tens of billion of won in Sejong Securities shares and make 10 billion won in profits should also be explained. What influence did Roh Geon-pyeong exercise in Sejong transactions? This should be cleared up as well.

It is regretful to see those who were in power during the Roh administration try to distance themselves from the indicted men saying, “This case has nothing to do with the Roh administration,” or “Don’t call Jeong Hwa-sam and Park Yeon-cha Roh’s friends.”

It seems impossible to explain Roh Geon-pyong’s role if they evade their responsibility in this way. It will also be hard to describe the present investigations as politically motivated or being meant to damage the moral integrity of the Roh administration.

Rather than try to influence the case with ridiculous logic, they should prepare an apology to the public and show deep repentance.

The vicious cycle of investigations into political corruption with every change in administration should be stopped by responding sternly to this matter and handing down heavy punishment.

An institutional scheme to effectively supervise the president’s relatives and block political brokers from entering the core of political power must be established without delay.

With a financial storm crashing around our heads, we have no time to wallow in political scandals, like an underdeveloped country.
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