Lime-Optimus scandal shakes government, politicians, prosecution

Oct 19, 2020, 09:30 am

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People Power Party Floor Leader Joo Ho-young speaks at the National Assembly on Oct. 18, 2020./ Photographed by AsiaToday reporter Song Eui-joo

AsiaToday reporter Lim Yoo-jin

The Lime-Optimus scandal is shaking the entire political community as well as the first parliamentary audit of the 21st assembly. Since there are suspicious circumstances surrounding the connection between the Lime-Optimus scandal and the Moon Jae-in administration, the ruling and opposition parties, and even prosecutors, the scandal is now emerging as a hot button that can hit hard the government, the ruling party and even the opposition party and prosecution. 

With eight days left until the end of the audit, the Lime-Optimus scandal has sparked a controversy shaking the rival parties and even prosecution. The ruling and opposition parties are expected to clash fiercely in the upcoming audit sessions of the parliamentary legislation and judiciary committee, where Prosecutor General Yoon Seok-youl is expected to attend, and the national policy committee, which deals with financial issues. Besides, former Start Mobility Chairman Kim Bong-hyun, a key suspect in the Lime case, issued a statement that he had lobbied a top opposition figure with bribe, turning the tables in favor of the ruling party, which was under increasing attacks from the opposition.

As a result, a legislation and judiciary committee audit on public prosecutors’ office under Seoul Public Prosecutors’ Office and Suwon Public Prosecutors’ Office to be held on Monday is expected to see the biggest confrontation between the rival parties. The Seoul Public Prosecutors’ Office includes Seoul Central District Prosecutor’s Office and Seoul Southern Prosecutor’s Office, which are investigating the Lime-Optimus cases. The National Assembly’s National Policy Committee is expected to call a former official at the presidential civil affairs office involved in the financial scandal as a witness in the parliamentary audit on the Financial Supervisory Service (FSS) scheduled for Oct. 23.

The opposition figure, dubbed as “A” that has been selected by the key suspect, has denied all the allegations on Sunday. “I was talking about consulting another company, which has nothing to do with Lime Asset Management. I received the case fees properly and even filed tax return,” the politician said. However, “A” remained cautious about clarifying himself in public, saying, “I will wait and see how things will go.” The leadership of the main opposition People Power Party (PPP) has reportedly checked the details from “A.”

The PPP raised questions about the motive behind Kim’s statement against the main opposition, claiming that the ruling party and prosecution are involved. The main opposition party pushed for a special investigation into the scandal, labeling it as a power-related corruption case. PPP Floor Leader Joo Ho-young said Sunday that his party is considering taking a protest outside the National Assembly building and that it would directly appeal to the public directly if the special investigation bill fails to pass.

The ruling DP went on the offensive, saying that Kim Bong-hyun’s revelation case explains the need for an independent body to specialize in investigating corruption cases involving high-level government officials. It said that Kim’s case should be the first one to be handled by the independent investigative unit.

#Lime #Optimus #audit #PPP #DP 
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