Newly elected Chairman Lee Jun-seok of the main opposition People Power Party (PPP) on June 12 unofficially designated 58-year-old National Assemblyman Seo Bum-soo as the secretary general of the PPP and National Assemblyman Hwang Bo-seung as senior spokesman of the party.
Reps. Seo and Wang are both first-time members of the National Assembly who have never been a National Assemblyman before. Reports indicate that Hwang and Seo both accepted Lee’s offer.
Chief secretary is in a key position at a political party in Korea, who helps the party chairman with in a closest distance from the chairman.
Reports indicate that there would be many area scenes in the future, including one where 68-year-old President Moon Jae-in would be meeting an opposition party chairman (Lee Jun-seok) who is 3 years younger even than Moon’s youngest son, Moon Joon-young.
Yoon has been putting off the date of his decision whether or not to join the main opposition PPP saying, “I think that it will be known when an appropriate time comes.”
However, Chairman Lee of the PPP says, “Young Chairman Lee of the PPP is also considered a ‘tough customer’ even for former Attorney General Yoon Suk-yeol who is running the first place in many of the polls on the next President of the Republic of Korea.
Chairman Lee keep saying that the Presidential candidate of the PPP must join the party by the end of August this year, but people close to Yoon said there is little chance of Yoon’s announcement of his decision whether or not to join the PPP as its Presidential candidate or whether to seek a difference choice. The Presidential election is only nine months away and many political observers predict that time is running out for both Chairman Lee and former Attorney General Yoon if they have ever to join hands.
Reports indicate that the Presidential hopefuls are also wracking their brains unable to make a timely decision over the sudden advent of a young new leadership at the PPP.
Relationship between Chairman Lee and former Attorney General Yoon is viewed by many political observers in Korea as being “very subtle and unpredictable.” They cite the statement of Yoon who was quoted as saying, “My mother-in-law has caused no loss to anybody in the world, even mere 10 Won.”
In connection with this situation, Chairman Lee was quoted by many Korean media as saying, “Well, many people will hope to see Mr. Yoon taking full responsibility for the statement.”
Meanwhile, a number of leaders of the PPP on June 11 congratulated Chairman Lee on his assumption of the chairmanship of the party, expressing hopes that Lee would be able to usher in a transformational change in the political arena in Korea.
Political leaders almost unanimously praised Lee's victory, expressing hopes that Lee could serve as an agent of change in today's political climate in Korea where confrontation and brinkmanship often mar the smooth win-win cooperation among the different political groups.
National Assemblyman Lee So-young (spokesperson of the ruling Democratic Party) was quoted by a Korean-language media as saying that “we welcome the change of conservatives and the victory of a young political leader in a party where 70 percent of the members are over 50.” Lee said that the situation would present new hopes as well as tensions.