Rice eaten with taxes ‘Private’… President Yoon’s opaque ‘meal politics’

There are more and more cases in which President Yoon Seok-yeol’s official dinner is not made public and belatedly known through media reports. It is pointed out that the president’s ‘meal politics’, in which national tax money is used, should be transparently disclosed. According to the <Hankyoreh> coverage on the 13th, on the evening of the 7th, President Yoon invited ‘Hannam-dong neighbors’, National Assembly Speaker Kim Jin-pyo, Supreme Court Chief Kim Myung-soo, Constitutional Court President Yoo Nam-seok, and Prime Minister Han Deok-soo to his official residence for a dinner

. It is known that President Yoon asked Speaker Kim to “intervene well” to handle next year’s budget bill, which is in pain in the National Assembly. The fact that President Yoon had dinner with a member of the fourth division was not revealed until six days later through media reports. After President Yoon moved into the official residence in Hannam-dong on the 8th of last month , the only meeting with the leadership of the people’s power on the 25th

of last month was the only previously announced dinner schedule . Three days prior to this, the fact that President Yoon invited four couples of ‘Yoon Haek-gwan’ (key officials of President Yoon), including Rep. Seong-dong Kwon and Je-won Jang, was belatedly known, but President Yoon’s private dinner continues. Religious figures such as Chairman Kim Jang-hwan of Far East Broadcasting and Buddhist monk Jaseung, members of the People’s Power, military officials such as Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Kim Seung-gyeom, US Forces Korea Commander Paul Lacamura, and Ministers Lee Sang-min 안전놀이터 (Ministry of Public Administration and Security) and Han Dong-hoon (Ministry of Justice) made non-disclosure at least seven times. The dinner was exposed posthumously through the mouths of the attendees. At a dinner with the heads of the 5th economic organization held at Sangchunjae in the Blue House on the 9th, the Severe Disaster Punishment Act, the Yellow Envelope Act, and the 52Extensive complaints from the business community regarding the part-time system were delivered, but these contents were also belatedly known through media reports. It is said that the dinner presided over by President Yoon goes back and forth between the official residence in Hannam-dong, the Blue House Sangchunjae, and the safe house. It is in contrast to releasing schedules and photos with less political controversy, such as science and technology elders, scholars from the National Academy of Sciences, and National Integration Committee advisory luncheons.

In the case of the United States, the president bears the cost of the president’s private meals, while in Korea, all of them are supported by taxes. This is why some point out that the president should be transparent about who he ate and what conversations he had with him. Lee Joon-han, professor of political science and diplomacy at Incheon University, said in a phone call with the <Hankyoreh> that day, “As an elected representative elected by the people, it is the principle to engage in public activities whenever possible.” He said, “If you eat with taxes, you have to disclose (schedule and content).” Park Won-ho, a professor of political science and diplomacy at Seoul National University, said, “I hope that (meal politics) will be regarded as a duty rather than a prerogative of the president.”

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