Lawmakers are back at work at the National
Asssembly, and they spent Monday drawing up action plans for the coming weeks. based on
feedback they received from their constituents over last week’s Chuseok holiday.
Kim Yeon-ji reports. The main opposition Democratic Party rolled out a new action plan on Monday
that includes running a 24-hour headquarters within parliament to focus exclusively on
parliamentary business. For the past two months, the opposition party
has carried out an outdoor campaign in Seoul. in protest against allegations that the spy
agency meddled in last year’s presidential election. The street protest has divided the
Democratic Party’s attention and resources, but the party now says it will launch a separate
all-out campaign against the Park Geun-hye administration at the National Assembly.
At a meeting of its lawmakers Monday, Democratic Party leader Kim Han-gil asked the 126 lawmakers
to bring sleeping bags to the National Assembly and immerse themselves in legislative activities,.
while Kim himself said he would expand the outdoor protests nationwide.
The government’s attempts to scale back President Park’s basic pension plan will be at the top
of their agenda. During her campaign, President Park pledged
to give everyone who is at least 65 years old about 186 U.S. dollars a month,. but reports
say the welfare ministry will narrow the eligibility to people in the lower 70-percent income bracket
and vary the amount according to income level. Meanwhile, the ruling Saenuri Party convened
a meeting of its lawmakers Monday afternoon, and said it welcomes the opposition party’s
decision to resume parliamentary business. Saying that a slowing domestic economy is
the public’s biggest concern, the ruling party leadership urged its lawmakers to focus on
creating jobs and reviving the sluggish real estate market. “In response to the Democratic Party’s installation
of a 24-hour headquarters within the parliament, the ruling Saenuri Party plans to set up a
situation room to keep an eye on the opposition party. Meanwhile, the rival parties will begin
negotiating a date for the standing committees to resume work, and will get ready for the
upcoming audit of government offices.” Kim Yeon-ji, Arirang News.