Previously parliamentary audits were so packed, you couldn’t even shuffle your feet through the thousands of officials from the inspected agencies and the reporters covering them.
Fourteen of the assembly’s seventeen standing committees held this year’s first inspection hearings on Wednesday,but Yeouido seemed rather quiet for what is a usually bustling kick-off.
That is due to the new COVID-19 guidelines that restrict the total number of people attending an audit, or waiting outside the halls, to less than 50.
Some sessions are even going non-contact.
The Health and Welfare Committee will connect to Sejong and Cheongju city on the second day where the Health Ministry and the Korea Disease Control and Prevention Agency are located.

The agencies in the committee are working on the frontline of the COVID-19 crisis. This new measure will help them follow thorough virus prevention measures and will minimize contact as much as possible”

The spotlight this year is on the government’s handling of the crisis.
The Health Ministry said the virus is still threatening lives, and is pledging an ample supply of medical resources.

“To counteract to the virus more effectively, we will establish a legal basis and develop manuals. We will also provide full support for the swift development of vaccines and treatments.”

Other issues in the spotlight are the recent killing of a South Korean government official by North Korea and the debate over the special military service treatment given to the justice minister’s son.

“Over the next 20 days, more than 640 government organizations will be inspected by the assembly’s various committees. COVID-19 being the key word affecting this year’s auditall eyes are on whether agencies have tackled the crisis effectively. Choi Jeong-yoon, Arirang News.”

Reporter : jychoi@arirang.com

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