DP, PPP agree on split of parliamentary committee chairmanships
President Yoon Suk-yeol’s People Power Party (PPP) and its rival Democratic Party (DP) finally came to terms last Friday in a meeting joined by their floor leaders and presided over by National Assembly Speaker Kim Jin-pyo.
Of the 18 parliamentary committees, both parties agreed that the DP, which holds the super-majority, will lead 11, while the PPP will lead the remainder.
On the biggest sticking points of who will chair the Science, ICT, Broadcasting and Communications Committee and the Public Administration and Security Committee, both sides agreed that each party will take turns holding the chairmanship of each committee for one year.
A DP lawmaker will serve as the chair of the Science, ICT, Broadcasting and Communications Committee until May 29, 2023, and pass the title onto a PPP lawmaker. A PPP lawmaker will serve as the chair of the Public Administration and Security Committee until the same deadline, after which a DP lawmaker will inherit the role.
The six other committees led by the PPP are the Steering Committee; Legislation and Judiciary Committee; National Defense Committee; Foreign Affairs and Unification Committee; Intelligence Committee; and the Strategy and Finance Committee.
The 10 other committees led by the DP are the National Policy Committee; Education Committee; Culture, Sports and Tourism Committee; Agriculture, Food, Rural Affairs, Oceans and Fisheries Committee; Trade, Industry, Energy, SMEs and Startups Committee; Health and Welfare Committee; Environment and Labor Committee; Land Infrastructure and Transport Committee; Gender Equality and Family Committee; and the Special Committee on Budget and Accounts.
A separate special committee on judicial reform, which will oversee discussions to establish a new serious crime investigation agency, will be chaired by the DP, while the 12 committee memberships will be split evenly between the DP and PPP.
The parties further agreed to launch a special political reform committee, chaired by the DP, and a special pension reform committee, chaired by the PPP, to discuss relevant issues.
Rep. Park Hong-geun, floor leader of the DP, told reporters after the Friday meeting that it was his idea to rotate chairmanships for the Science, ICT, Broadcasting and Communications Committee and the Public Administration and Security Committee, stressing that the party hoped to resume legislative activities to protect people’s livelihoods.
Rep. Kweon Seong-dong, floor leader of the PPP, said the agreement was “unsatisfying” for both sides, but that he, too, decided to accept Rep. Park’s offer so as to return the National Assembly to full work mode.
BY LEE SUNG-EUN [firstname.lastname@example.org]