25 May 2024
South Korea has its first female president 0

South Korea has its first female president 0

Ms. Park Geun-hye today won a narrow but historically important victory in the Korean presidential election, to become the first woman to hold power in the country.> Koreans go to vote for president

Ruling party candidate Park Geun-hye held a banner reading `Female President Park Geun-hye` at a campaign rally in Seoul yesterday.

With 85% of the votes counted nationwide, Ms. Park leads opposition party rival Moon Jae-in with a ratio of 51.6% to 48%.

The race is largely focused on domestic economic issues, with both candidates offering similar policies as they try to appeal to moderate voters.

`I will be a president who fulfills all the commitments I made to the people,` Ms. Park said to a crowd of cheering, flag-waving supporters at an outdoor victory celebration in central Seoul.

However, she is more cautious than Mr. Moon on the issue of limiting the power of giant family-owned corporations that dominate the Korean economy.

She also showed her willingness to resume humanitarian aid to Pyongyang, which has been suspended by current President Lee Myung-bak since coming to power.

Mr. Moon, who lost to Ms. Park, also just admitted defeat.

Although Ms. Park is 60 years old, she has never been married and has no children, a fact that helps her win over voters who are fed up with corruption scandals involving presidential families.

A female president would be a sea change for South Korea, which was recently ranked 108th out of 135 countries by the World Economic Forum for gender equality, just below the United Arab Emirates.

`I can’t even describe how happy I feel right now. I feel like I’m crying,` said Cha In-Hong, a 57-year-old office worker.

Ms. Park’s presidential inauguration ceremony will take place on February 25 next year.

Previously, more than three hours after polling stations closed, television stations KBS, SBS and MBC all declared that Ms. Park `certainly` won a historic victory over Democratic Alliance party rival Moon Jae-

With more than 40% of the votes nationwide counted, Ms. Park was then leading with 52.5% of the votes, compared to Mr. Moon’s 47.1%.

A crowd of supporters also gathered outside Ms. Park’s residence in Seoul, cheering and waving national flags.

Despite the cold weather of -10 degrees Celsius, the Korean presidential election still attracted 75% of voters to vote, compared to 63% in the 2007 election.

A victory for Park, 60, would not only make her the first female president of a country long ruled by men, but also the first to be linked to a former leader.

Mr. Park Chung-hee is both admired for bringing the country out of poverty and condemned for his policy of brutally suppressing dissidents during his 18 years in power.

Ms. Park promises a strong leadership style to help the country overcome challenges in the difficult context of the global economy.

`Just like a mother sacrifices her life for her family, I will become a president who takes care of the lives of each and every one of you,` she said in her final press conference yesterday.

Mr. Ngoc

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