PSPD l People's Solidarity for Participatory Democracy
PSPD English Newsletter, February2016
- 2016.02.01 (14:57:58)
PSPD Newsletter, February 2016
Happy Participation, Heartwarming Solidarity This Month of the PSPD
● 2016 General Election is around the corner! General Election Preparation, GO! GO! GO!
▶ There is no doubt that upcoming General Election and Presidential Election are very important event which would have a great influence on the present and the future Korean society. The picture of election is getting complicated because oppositions have split up while the President Park Geun-hye and the Blue House have stepped in the election. Usually, the main issue of a general election in the middle of presidential term is judgment over current government and a leading party but the President and the Blue House are asking the people to judge oppositions and incompetent National Assembly. Despite that democracy in economy is a promise of the Park Geun-hye government, it is pushing for retrograded reform of the labor law putting blames on workers for a principle cause of economic crisis. To cope with all these, civil society and social movements should expose true faces of authorities in power and inquire inability of oppositions which have failed to check. It is essential to lead and increase the participation level and the fever of voters.
● The School for public interest activities of the Young
▶ The ‘PSPD the Young’ is an affiliate organization of the PSPD and it runs an awesome and dynamic education and participation program called ‘The School for public interest activities of the young’. Even though living in a harsh period especially for the young people, enthusiastic twenty one have enrolled to study PSPD, and civil and social activities. The program includes University Education with a civil think tank Korea University Education Research Institute, Free of Nuclear with Kim Ik-joong, Labor Movement with Ha Jong-kang and Green politics with Ha Seung-su a president of Green Party Korea.
● Solid and conscientious prosecutors are hard to survive in the Korean Prosecutors Office
▶ The Judicial Watch of PSPD Keeps working for a prosecutor Yim Eun-jeong who was punished for demanding innocent for Yoon Kil-joong at the retrial who was said to be guilty for violating the National Security Act in 2012. Oddly, the Prosecutors Office categorized Yim from Prosecutor Competence Assessment to subject to Depth Assessment but judges unanimously gave her pass. In regard to this incident, PSPD presented a comment on 13 January urging the Ministry of Justice to improve Competence Assessment System in order to stop misusing it to dismiss good conscientious prosecutors.
● The Court said to withdraw the decision not to open security education movie of the Ministry of Defense
▶ The PSPD has won the case of request for information disclosure on 21 January. The Seoul Administration Court said the Ministry of Defense to withdraw the decision not to open security education movie which became an issue because of violent contents such as forced termination. It was obvious decision since the Ministry did not comply with the law. PSPD welcomed it and urged the Ministry to swiftly disclose the movie and improve typical close-door attitude. To take this opportunity, social discussions regarding security education of the Ministry and the Armed forces have to take place, and contents and manners of security education need to be changed in depth.
● Responding to a haste agreement on ‘comfort woman’ of Japanese Army continues
▶ The Peace and Disarmament Center requested to disclose the information concerning the agreement on comfort woman between the Korean and Japanese foreign ministries. The questions were made to Yoon Byung-se, a foreign minister requesting to open the process and contents of the agreement. As anger of the people is growing, the government needs to show detailed discussions, process, agenda between two nations and following government’s stance and documents transparently so that the conflict can be settled and resolutions understandable for sex slave victims are found. PSPD is actively participating in <Holding hands with sex slave victims of Japanese Army> and <National Action to invalidate the agreement on comfort woman and for a righteous settlement>
● Handed in 1mm size letter of protest concerning the court’s decision that Home Plus is not guilty for illegally selling customer information
▶ The Home Plus has sold customer’s personal information to insurance companies without consent and accordingly has been prosecuted for violating the private information protection Act. However, the Court said on 8 January that not only the Home Plus Co. Ltd but also executives were all innocent. Therefore, the Campaign for Anyone with Stable Life presented a joint statement together with the Consumer Protection Center of Citizens' Coalition for Economic Justice and the Jinbo Network denouncing the court for ignoring damages on customers and giving an indulgence to the Home Plus. In addition, 1mm size letter of protest was handed in to the court in charge on 13 January to make an appeal against the ground of court’s decision. The Court insisted that customers have agreed on information provision written in 1mm size on a gift event application used by the Home Plus to collect and sell customer information. The letter of protest made in 1mm size was covered in various presses and PSPD received big supports from the people. PSPD is looking forward to having a right judgment at the appeal.
● Asking the Blue House if promises for economic democracy have been kept?
▶ From the end of last year till today, the Blue House, the Korea Fair Trade Commission, the Ministry of Planning and Finance, Kim Moo-sung, a president of Saenuri Party have tried to convince the people that the Park Guen-hye government has kept most of its promises to achieve economic democracy. However, PSPD analysis shows that 10 out of 18 economic democracy policies from the presidential election promises have not been carried out at all. Six have been partly implemented and only two have been completed as promised. Especially the PSPD pointed out that core policies are among 10 unimplemented including revised business bills for economic democracy and Chabeol reform for the purpose of stopping and preventing power abuses and evil practices of large conglomerates. It also strongly criticized that telling lies to have kept promises was truly inappropriate behavior. The Economic and Finance Center presented a press release, wrote columns and visited the Blue House on 21 January to appeal. PSPD will keep trying to resolve economic democracy related matters, Chabeol reform and Gap-Eul problem (Power abuse).
● Exposed and denounced government-initiated petition of Park Geun-hye and Chabeol to enact retrograded labor reform bill
▶ The Labor and Society committee presented an urgent press release on 20 January “Economic and finance circles have mobilized employees for getting signatures on the petition to demand biased legislation favorable for Chabeol and large conglomerates”. The Korean Finance and Service Workers Union and Park Won-seok, a lawmaker of the Justice Party obtained and exposed an official document which economic organizations and six financial associations asked member companies and organizations to collect signatures of employees, visitors and financial planners for “The petition to collect ten thousands signatures to enact ‘Saving economy (Saving livelihood) bills”. The document has confirmed that the petition in progress is a typical government-initiated action and public opinion manipulation led by the Blue House, economic circles and employer organizations. Without having a national discussion and social consensus, Park Geun-hye has bluntly forced Jeong Eui-hwa, a National Assembly Speaker to execute discharging power and even carried out authority controlled petition.