The PPP needs to wake up

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The PPP needs to wake up

After a court accepted former People Power Party (PPP) chairman Lee Jun-seok’s injunction to nullify the emergency committee’s decision to shift the operation of the governing party to the emergency system, the PPP has come up with countermeasures. After a five-hour meeting, the PPP decided to set up a new emergency committee. Though the court found fault with the establishment of the committee earlier, the party has resorted to launching another emergency committee to address the crisis of the party after the former chairman was suspended for six months for his apparent sexual misconduct.

Political analysts criticize the PPP for trying to resolve the crisis with a shallow fix. The Constitution of the party allows the PPP to set up an emergency committee when emergency situations — such as the vacancy of chairmanship by force majeure or a loss of normal function of the Supreme Council — take place. But the court ruled that the vacancy left by Lee’s suspension cannot constitute an emergency, because the emergency committee was able to function if only two more members had been added to the existing three of the nine-membered committee.

Even after winning the March 9 presidential election, the PPP has been embroiled in endless in-house battles. However, instead of reflecting on its shameful behavior and addressing internal conflicts on its own, the party was engrossed with kicking out the provocative thirtysomething head of the conservative party. Even party insiders attacked it for “ridiculing PPP supporters and the public.”

The unprecedented crisis of the PPP demands floor leader Kweon Seong-dong, a close ally of President Yoon Suk-yeol, retreat from the frontline immediately. Rep. Kweon took the post of acting head of the party after interpreting the six-month suspension of former head Lee as an emergency. But his failure to obtain procedural justice in shifting to the emergency mode led to the court’s ruling against it. A number of senior PPP lawmakers strongly call for his resignation and the election of a new floor leader.

If the PPP adheres to a new emergency committee, it will only prolong the chaos in the party, as former chairman Lee threatened to take more legal action against the reestablishment of the committee. The time has come for President Yoon to step in and depart with any lawmakers close to him to end their ill-intended politics to use the president for their personal gains.

The president and PPP must carefully read ever-worsening public sentiment. People’s livelihoods are worsening due to high inflation ahead of the Chuseok holidays next month. On Sept. 1, the regular session of the National Assembly opens to pass the government’s budget for 2023 and deal with other urgent issues.
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