Outgoing Constitutional Court Chief Calls for National Unity
SEOUL, March 13 (Yonhap) -- The outgoing acting chief of the Constitutional Court on Monday called for national unity in the wake of President Park Geun-hye's ouster, saying the recent pain caused by the political scandal will help the nation mature.
Lee Jung-mi made the remarks during her retirement ceremony at the court, three days after she led a historic ruling to dismiss Park over a corruption scandal.'
"It was a truly painful and difficult decision," she said of the unanimous ruling by the court's eight justices. "Even if the pain is great, I hope we will be able to live together in harmony with love and tolerance."
The 54-year-old judge was the only woman on the originally nine-member bench that deliberated on the National Assembly's impeachment of Park in December.
She took over as acting chief justice following the retirement of Chief Justice Park Han-chul in January.
"Even if the pain of the throes is great today, I believe we will be able to grow into a more mature democratic nation rooted in the Constitution and the rule of law," she said.
Lee is expected to be succeeded by lawyer Lee Seon-ae, who was recently tapped by the Supreme Court chief. The court will have seven justices while Lee Seon-ae undergoes parliamentary confirmation.