Former Prime Minister Kim Hwang-sik officially announced his bid for mayor of Seoul on Sunday, pledging to turn the capital into a city that saves lives.
“I will engage in the Seoul mayor race with the determination that I will give my all,” Kim, 65, said at a news conference at the headquarters of the ruling Saenuri Party.
He also said that he will make efforts to improve the municipal government’s welfare safety net, citing recent group suicides of financially distressed families.
A mother and her two daughters took their own lives late last month by inhaling toxic gas, leaving a suicide note that said that they could no longer make a living. It was later found that they were entitled to government subsidies but never applied for them because they did not know they were eligible.
Kim described Seoul as a vibrant city with dark alleys shadowed by the high suicide rate, record number of deaths from traffic accidents and other ills.
“I will turn Seoul into a city that saves people, not a city where people get killed,” Kim said.
Kim, who served as prime minister under former President Lee Myung-bak, will be competing against two others seeking Saenuri’s nomination as the Seoul mayor candidate. (Yonhap)