The measures, announced by Senior Civil Affairs Secretary Cho Kuk, are in response to recent controversy surrounding the inspection team, including that concerning a team member who attempted to gain information on an ongoing police investigation. Members of the team are also alleged to have played golf during work hours.
|Senior Civil Affairs Secretary Cho Kuk at Tuesday`s Cabinet meeting. Yonhap|
Following the allegations, all members of the inspection team -- selected from police and the prosecutors’ office -- have been sent back to their organizations, and Cho has requested the organizations to investigate concerned individuals.
Under the measures announced Friday, the name of the team will be changed from the current “special inspection team” to “inspection team.” The office of the civil affairs secretary will also introduce regulations to prevent team members from violating the code of conduct, and measures to allow them to refuse unjust orders.
In addition, the division of functions of the two inspection teams within the presidential office will be made clearer, according to the reform plans.
At present, the offices of the civil affairs secretary and anti-corruption secretary both operate special inspection teams. Following the changes, the inspection team in the anti-corruption office will be renamed as “government official inspection team.”
The composition of the government official inspection team will also be changed to include officials from the police, prosecutors’ office, Board of Audit and Inspection and National Tax Service.
The new regulations concerning the team’s operations consist of 21 clauses.
Under the new regulations, team members will be required to receive the team leader’s approval before opening a probe. The team will also be required to report before and after contacting government officials who are under its jurisdiction.
The inspection team will also be prohibited from being involved in cases that are transferred to government agencies.
By Choi He-suk (firstname.lastname@example.org)