저작권자 © Korea IT Times 무단전재 및 재배포 금지
It is encouraging news that President Roh Moo-hyun told leaders of the ruling Uri Party to handle the four reform bills with patience rather than in haste. His advice reveals his full support of the two top officials of the government party who have been severely attacked by a substantial number of party members for compromising with their counterparts from the main opposition Grand National Party in handling the four bills through dialogue. It also demonstrates President Roh will to concentrate efforts on reviving the stagnant economy in the management of state affairs for this year. Even though his advice certainly deserves praise, it is unfortunate President Roh did not take on such a flexible stance over the four bills much earlier. The fierce confrontation between the government party and the GNP marred the passage of urgent economic bills and this year budget program during the 100-day regular session of the National Assembly, which ended on Dec. 9. Without a doubt, President Roh made matters worse with his assertion in a TV interview in September, last year that the National Security Law should be abolished under any circumstances, describing it as an old relic. His controversial statement forced the ruling party to try to repeal the anti-communist law and pass three other reform bills. In particular, the government party move to kill the security law seriously deepened generational conflict, thus seriously disturbing national unity. Dozens of ruling party members, who are now on demonstration calling for the abolition of the security law, ought to end their struggle immediately to help settle the issue and three other bills through bipartisan cooperation, as suggested by President Roh. As a majority of people is opposed to abrogating the controversial law, their intransigence not only defies President Roh but also hampers the ruling party consolidation. If the law were revised in such a way as to scrap poisonous elements that previous authoritarian governments had used to crack down on dissidents challenging their power, it is tantamount to its repeal. The rival camps ought to endeavor to handle the four bills based on mutual accord, putting an end to the waste of time and energy at the expense of taxpayers precious money. With the resolution to the four bills, they should combine efforts to stimulate the economy, which is forecast to slip further this year because of the slowdown in both exports and domestic construction. They should also cooperate to conduct politics of ialogue and compromise, which they promised soon after the general elections in April.