SEOUL: South Korea’s parliament on Wednesday approved Lee Nak-Yon as the country’s new prime minister, paving the way for President Moon Jae-In to replace ministers appointed by his ousted predecessor Park Geun-Hye.
The National Assembly voted 164 to 20 in favor of Lee, a journalist-turned-politician, as new prime minister, amid a boycott by the conservative opposition Liberty Korea Party (LKP).
All 107 lawmakers of the LKP stayed away as the motion to endorse the prime minister-nominee was put to a vote.
Lee has been dogged by allegations, among other charges, that his wife used a false address in 1989 to get assigned to a school in Seoul as a teacher.
Under South Korea’s strong presidential system, the prime ministerial job is largely symbolic and ceremonial.
With the new prime minister taking office, the left-leaning president can go ahead with installing his own cabinet to replace the conservative line-up appointed by Park.
Park has been impeached and arrested over a corruption scandal that saw millions of protesters taking to the streets.
Moon has already named ministers for key posts, including the head of the country’s spy agency, the foreign minister and economic ministerial posts.