South Korean Ministry Of Culture, Sports & Tourism Accused Of Favoring Candidate
South Korea's Ministry of Culture, Sports & Tourism "has been accused of attempting to parachute Chungnam National University scholar Lee Chang-sup into the chairman post at the Korea Sports Promotion Foundation," according to Jung Min-ho of the KOREA TIMES. The KSPF "is a powerful organization" with an annual budget of 889B won ($836M), managing income from the country’s Sports TOTO sports lottery and legalized gambling. Through the KSPF, money from such activities is allocated to a variety of welfare, culture and leisure programs. The culture ministry "closely controls the picking a person to head the KSPF." While the ministry issued the job call in February, "sources close to the process question whether the competition is truly open." They believe that "the ministry has already cherry-picked Lee, a physical education professor with close ties to President Park Geun-hye’s Saenuri Party," to succeed current KSPF Chair Jung Jung-taek. Three candidates "are now waiting for the ministry’s recommendation" to President Park Geun-hye after the KSPF weeded out 14 other applicants for the position in mid-March through document examination and interviews (KOREA TIMES, 4/1).