UPDATE : 2019.11.22 FRI 10:01
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Request for PM-designate's hearing to be submitted soon: sources

A request for a parliamentary confirmation hearing on Prime Minister-designate Lee Nak-yon will be submitted to the National Assembly as early as Friday, multiple government sources said.

Once the written request is submitted under the name of new President Moon Jae-in, the legislature is to complete the confirmation process within 20 days.

Securing the parliamentary endorsement for Lee is seen as a crucial task for Moon striving to round out a fresh Cabinet, as the president can pick ministers through a prime minister's recommendations.

On Wednesday, Moon tapped the South Jeolla Province governor to take his government's No. 2 post.

"We plan to submit the request for a parliamentary hearing on Lee to the Assembly as early as today (Friday)," a government official told Yonhap News Agency over the phone. "The submission process has been picking up pace."

The prime minister's office has set up a team to prepare for Lee's parliamentary hearing. The team consists of five divisions in charge of policy, personal vetting, political affairs, publicity and administrative affairs.

Interpretations have varied as to whether the prime minister can only exercise the right to recommend ministers to the president.

Some observers say that Yoo Il-ho, the deputy prime minister for economic affairs who currently serves as acting prime minister, should be allowed to exercise the minister recommendation authority, while others say the method is not in line with the law.

Moon's Democratic Party once pushed for a legal revision to allow the prime minister-nominee to exercise the recommendation authority, but the move failed as critics argued that it runs counter to the Constitution. (Yonhap)

This photo, taken on May 11, 2017, shows Prime Minister-designate Lee Nak-yon speaking during a press conference in Muan, 385 kilometers south of Seoul. (Yonhap)

Lee Sung-won  edt@koreapost.com

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