Moon looking to reshuffle presidential aides

Jan 07, 2019, 08:46 am

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By AsiaToday reporter Lee Seok-jong

President Moon Jae-in is considering conducting personnel reshuffle this week. He is expected to reshuffle some of his senior aides, including his chief of staff Im Jong-seok, secretary for political affairs Han Byung-do and presidential press secretary Yoon Young-chan.

Moon’s reshuffle seems to be a step toward tightening discipline within Cheong Wa Dae and freshening up the atmosphere to create visible outcome of his policies as the president enters the third year of his five-year presidency, which has been hit with a decline in public support for his policies. 

The possible reshuffle may take place before Moon’s New Year press event on Thursday to explain his administration’s key policy objectives. Moon had a regular dinner with Prime Minister Lee Nak-yon, chief of staff Im Jong-seok, and Lee Hae-chan, the chairman of the ruling Democratic Party of Korea (DPK) on Sunday.  He is scheduled to have a regular luncheon with the prime minister on Monday. 

This is why many believe that Moon would conduct the shakeup sometime around Tuesday after listening to opinions from the prime minister and the ruling party.

Above all, Thursday will be 20 months since Moon Jae-in took office in 2017, making it a perfect day for Moon to make a new announcement to freshen up the atmosphere.

“Cheong Wa Dae needs to have a clear direction on its reshuffle,” said Kim Hyung-joon, a professor at Myongji University. “There were difficulties that the previous administrations had to face when they entered the third year in power. The current administration needs to overcome such difficulties.”

“The first presidential aide team might have had a perfect chemistry with the president, but they have demonstrated partisanship, blocking cooperative governance,” Kim said. “The president should surround himself with people who are capable.”

“In the case of chief of staff, the president should select one who can solve controversial issues that emerge between the ruling and the opposition parties on behalf of the president,” Kim said. “A presidential secretary for political affairs needs to be capable of managing the power heavily,” Kim added.

“The president should select those who have wide experience and able to cooperate with the opposition parties,” said Shin Yul, a professor at Myongji University. “In this respect, he needs to boldly consider candidates from the opposition parties.”

#presidential aides #Im Jong-seok #Moon Jae-in #personnel reshuffle 
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