New FSS Chief Resigns Over Snowballing Scandal

Nicholas Kim, April 17, 2018, 8:59 a.m.

New Financial Supervisory Service chief Kim Ki-shik resigned on Monday just 15 days after his appointment as he became engulfed in a snowballing scandal. That makes him the shortest-serving FSS chief in history.  The final straw was a revelation by the National Election Commission that Kim violated regulations by giving W50 million that remained from his campaign funds during his days as a lawmaker to the Korea Institute for the Future, of which he was a member (US$1=W1,074).

President Moon Jae-in last Friday bowed to public pressure by promising to accept the FSS chief's resignation should any violations be discovered.  

The NEC then convened a review meeting at the request of Cheong Wa Dae. The commission said Kim's donation violates election laws that ban lawmakers from giving funds to a non-profit organization under the guise of special operating funds.

Kim had paid a W10 million membership fee to the institute and W200,000 in monthly fees.

The scandal first broke when it was revealed that Kim went on a junket to China and India paid for by Woori Bank in 2015, when he was a member of the National Policy Committee at the National Assembly.

Cheong Wa Dae refused to sack him, saying the trip was part of official business. It then emerged that Kim had gone on other junkets to the U.S. and Europe accompanied by a young intern, and not been entirely candid when asked about them. He is also suspected of repaying the Korea Institute for International Economic Policy for an all-expenses-paid trip by trying to help it set up a European office. 

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