By Lee Kyung-sik
Publisher of The Korea Post media
The two weeks from now are expected to be a very racial period for President Park Geun-hye and the Korean people. Sentencing of the Constitutional Court on President Park will come on March 13, 2017, or before. The day also coincides with the date of completion of the term of office of Acting President Madam Lee Jung-mi of the Constitutional Court, which means the final day until when the 8-man system of the Constitutional Court will be maintained.
The prevailing question asked by many Koreans today is, “Will President Park Geun-hye resign from the Presidency from her own free will, or will she continue to precariously cling on to the post from which some 70% of the Korean people obviously wish her to leave?”
The Special Prosecution authorities have given her a three-day lease until February 27 for her to explain herself. The Korean people generally seem to feel that the Special Prosecutors have been doing the best they couldin helping the President leave the post ‘saving her face.’ Against this backdrop, however, President Park’s defense lawyers apparently continue to try to hamper and procrastinate the special investigation, and are putting off giving an exact date for President Park to speak about herself.
The defense lawyers for President Park seem to continue to procrastinate obviously in a scheme to put it off until beyond the date of the term of office of Acting President Madam Lee Jung-mi of the Constitutional Court, which will fall on March 13, 2017.
The defense lawyers of President Park who are under fire from the leaders of the opposition camp and most of the people who want her to resign “when she still has time to do so.” Leading Korean-language daily, Dong-A Ilbo, stated in its editorial on February 23, 2017,“President Park’s defense lawyers are acting in a manner whichpersons with proper common sense can hardly understand when we see them submitting a rejection plea to the Constitutional Court against Main Judge Kang Il-won of the Constitutional Court accusing him that he was unfairly handling the case of the President.” Defense Lawer Kim Pyung-woo, according to Dong-A, vehemently accused Judge Kang of the Constitutional Court as handling the case in an unfair manner and even called Judge Kang “a head defense lawyer for the National Assembly.”
There are various other reports that the defense layers of President Park are now making desperate last-minute efforts to ‘defend’ President Park, which are regarded by the media and general public as improper and beyond common sense.
There even are indications that the defense lawyers of Park might even try to boycott the Special Prosecution’s handling of the Park case all together, and make an en-masse resignation as Park’s defense lawyers.
The 70-day Special Investigation Period officially expires on Feb. 28, 2017, and the Special Prosecutors have officially requested an extension of the investigation period from the government of Acting President Hwang Kyo-ahn.
However, there has been no response from the Hwang Cabinet. Extension of Special Investigation is unlikely at this time as ruling and opposition camps have failed to meet half-way in extending the Special Investigation Period beyond the 70-day deadline.
In this situation, the Special Investigators are expected to complete the investigationactivities by the date of the deadline, and do everything they could and as much as possible before the legal deadline of their official activities.
The following two weeks are the final period of defense and it is expected that the sentencing of the Constitutional Court to whether or not to dismiss President Park as the President of the Republic of Korea will be decided on March 13, 2017, which is two weeks from the final hearing.
March 13, 2017 coincides with the date of completion of the term of office of Acting President Madam Lee Jung-mi of the Constitutional Court, which means the final day until when the eight-man system of the Constitutional Court will be maintained.