PSPD in English Newsletter 2023-10-31   426

This Month at PSPD, October 2023

We Will Continue to Act and Stand in Solidarity!

참여연대 창립 기념행사에서 참석자들이 기념사진을 찍고 있습니다.
참가자들이 종이 비행기를 날리고 있습니다.

On September 6, PSPD’s 29th Anniversary was celebrated at the Alumni Hall of Yonsei University. More than 250 people including our members, citizens, and activists attended. We sincerely thank you for taking the time to attend the ceremony.

PSPD to monitor the last regular session of the 21st National Assembly

The final regular session of the 21st National Assembly opened with numerous tasks awaiting. The National Assembly faces greater responsibility to supervise the government. There is much legislative work to be done for people’s livelihood and political reform. Furthermore, as the Yoon administration entered its second year, we witnessed the regression of the political, diplomatic, social, and economic sectors. There are many legislative tasks for the people’s livelihood and reform, and there are no areas in the second year of Yoon Suk Yeol’s administration that have not regressed in any of the political, diplomatic, social, and economic fields. In response, at the opening of the regular session of the National Assembly, the PSPD announced the list for the last regular session of the National Assembly in 2023.

In addition, we proposed 10 tasks that need to be questioned and identified through a parliamentary audit. The National Assembly should properly investigate allegations of abuse of power by the president and his aides, including allegations of external pressure on the Marine Corps investigation and preferential treatment for the president’s family highway project. The government should take responsibility for people’s safety, including the investigation and follow-up measures of the 10.29 Itaewon disaster, for which no one is responsible, and the plan to stop Japan’s discharge of nuclear-contaminated water. We should not miss the issues of people’s livelihoods, such as reviewing measures to support Jeonse(a type of housing lease in South Korea) fraud, identifying responsibility for apartment cases where steel rods were missing, and preparing measures to prevent recurrence.

PSPD plans to demand that the proposed tasks be addressed in this regular session of the National Assembly, while also closely monitoring the subsequent legislative, national audit, and budget deliberation processes to see if the tasks are properly discussed. Improving the people’s livelihood and monitoring administration are the natural functions of the National Assembly. To ensure that the 21st National Assembly plays its role to the end, PSPD will also monitor the last regular session of the 21st National Assembly until the end.

The National Assembly must address the suspicions of external pressure in the Marine Corps investigations!

2023.9.15. 해병대 수사 외압 의혹 국정조사 촉구 시민 의견 전달 기자회견

The National Assembly proposed an independent counsel law to find out the truth and punish those responsible for the cover-up of the death of Corporal Chae, who died in Gyeongsangbuk-do in July, after being mobilized to search for missing persons in heavy rain without a life jacket. However, it is expected that it will take a considerable amount of time to appoint a special prosecutor to the case.

The defense minister, a key figure in the allegations, has already resigned. Col. Park Jung-hoon, who revealed the suspicion of external pressure on the investigation to the world, was dismissed from his position. The prosecution even sought an arrest warrant (later rejected) for Colonel Park. Under these circumstances, will the police be able to reveal their superiors and properly cover up the responsibility for Corporal Chae’s death? Moreover, the investigation is already fragile due to the suspected involvement of the minister and the presidential office.

What Parliament should do is now clear. A thorough parliamentary investigation should quickly address concerns about the destruction of evidence by the Ministry of National Defense, find out the truth, and identify those responsible. In addition, according to the constitutional obligation to check the administration and its responsibility to the sovereign people, it must thoroughly determine the cause of the tragic accidents and make efforts to prevent a recurrence.

From September 3rd, PSPD launched a campaign to send e-mails to all members of the National Assembly urging them to conduct a parliamentary investigation. On September 15, we held a press conference calling for a parliamentary investigation and delivered the opinions of 3,128 people gathered in the first round to the National Assembly.

Disgraceful Nominee for Chief Justice

What about a judge who failed to properly declare his assets even though he was a public official, reduced the sentences of sex crimes and domestic violence offenders, and acquitted a judge who was involved in judicial manipulation? Lee Kyun Yong, a candidate for Chief Justice of the Supreme Court nominated by President Yoon Suk Yeol, had a spectacular past. If such a person becomes the chief justice, will the people trust the judiciary?

PSPD announced its position that the candidate should resign voluntarily and held a press conference with the Lawyers for a Democratic Society, the Korean Women’s Association, the Korean Women’s Hotline, and the Korean Progressive Alliance to demand that the National Assembly reject the appointment.

The digression of the parallel regional proportional representation system

20231101_진보4당·시민사회, 선거제 퇴행 반대 기자회견

In order to reduce extreme conflict and confrontation in Korean politics and open the way for cooperation, we must break the two-party structure and move to a multi-party system. However, the parallel regional proportional representation system currently being discussed in the National Assembly is the worst system for further narrowing the position of minority parties, and is completely contrary to this direction. Together with the Joint Action for 2024 Political Reform, PSPD clearly expressed its opposition to the parallel regional proportional representation system and the creation of a satellite party and urged the establishment of an electoral system that strengthens representation and proportionality.

Welfare excluded from 2024 budget

The government has announced a budget plan with the lowest growth rate ever. If the economic outlook is bleak and the effects of the chaebol’s tax cuts hit next year, the tax revenue shortage is expected to continue. However, the Yoon Suk Yeol government has not offered any measures to expand tax revenue. There is a lot of concern that these tax cuts and the tight fiscal stance won’t get you where you really need to go. Government finances should be used to stabilize people’s livelihoods and revitalize the economy. We will monitor the budget review process and raise issues during the regular session of the National Assembly.

Regulation needed to counter Big Tech Companies’ monopoly

PSPD accuses big tech companies of monopoly and abuse of power and proposes related bills to create a fair market for the digital platform market. On September 14 and 19, we held a series of “Continuous Discussions on Preparing Big Tech Regulations to Create a Fair Market for Digital Platforms” and began discussions on the impact of big tech on Korean society, countermeasures, and regulatory legislation. In particular, we looked at the cases of damage to monopoly abuse of Google, a global big tech company, and the need for regulation ▲ targeted (customized) advertising status and the correct direction of the guidelines.

Translated by a PSPD Volunteer

Korean Version>>

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