Moon appoints education minister, LKP groans

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Moon appoints education minister, LKP groans


President Moon Jae-in, second from left, leaves a ceremony to appoint Yoo Eun-hae, far right, as his new education minister at the Blue House in Seoul on Thursday. [YONHAP]

President Moon Jae-in appointed a new education minister Tuesday, despite objections from the main opposition party.

Yoo Eun-hae, a lawmaker of the ruling Democratic Party, was officially appointed as the new education minister in a ceremony held at the Blue House.

“There are many important tasks. I ask you to try and create an all-day care service for children up to elementary school, and I believe the next important mission is to greatly reduce the cost of education by introducing free education for high school students,” the president told the new education minister, according to Blue House pool reports. Yoo, 56, will also serve as deputy prime minister for social affairs.

“The deputy prime minister for social affairs must also play a leading role not only in the education sector, but also in other areas, ranging from cultural, sports, welfare, environment and gender equality to people with disabilities, the elderly population and labor, so that our society can become an inclusive nation,” the president told the newest cabinet member.

Yoo’s appointment came one day after the National Assembly again failed to meet the deadline to issue a report on the outcome of her confirmation hearing last month.

The report is considered the parliament’s blessing for a new minister, though a minister does not require parliamentary confirmation to be appointed.

The main opposition Liberty Korea Party (LKP) objected to her appointment, citing ethical lapses such as false registration of her daughter’s address to get her admitted to a better elementary school.

“We believe Yoo has adequately apologized for what she needed to apologize for and explained what needed to be explained,” the Blue House spokesman said.

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