A politician, new President of the KTA
Tae-Hwan Kim, congressman of Korea, was elected as new President of the Korea Taekwondo Association (KTA) last Tuesday February 5th after the General Assembly held at the Olympic Parktel hotel of Seoul. Kim defeated the other candidate, Yoon-Taek Lim, Vice-president of the Seoul Taekwondo Association, by 12 votes to 8 in a close balloting that allows him to lead the oldest Taekwondo association worldwide for the next 4 years.
The 26th President of the KTA stated that he will “strive to help Taekwondo reach a better status and create a strong and united KTA”. Kim also promised that he will create a Human Resources Committee “that will help Taekwondo athletes having more confidence on the KTA functioning”. The programme of the new President also contains the creation of a Special Committee aimed to improve the athletes’ performance, the construction of a Training Center exclusive for Taekwondo and the will to obtain grants from the Korean government that enable athletes to find a job abroad in the future.
The day before the elections, a survey that predicted a more comfortable victory for Kim -15 votes to 5- was published, extending the rumour that if Lim wasn’t able to get at least 5 votes, he would be seriously thinking about retiring his candidature, as his future in the world of Taekwondo would be highly questioned after such a tough defeat.
As such, once the official results were published, candidate Lim went silently out of the room showing his satisfaction for the 8 votes that he received and expecting the final composition of the Executive Board of the KTA. The specialized media of Korea are saying that, despite of his defeat, Lim presented an election programme with some really good initiatives for the future of our sport in its country of origin.
On the other hand, Kim’s supporters couldn’t hide their surprise for the final vote difference, which was significantly lower than what they expected. All of them, who seemed to be very united until then, left the hall immediately after hearing the result. The feeling within the local press is that the members who supported Kim are more interested in taking a relevant position within the KTA than any other thing. Korean media have already started to speculate about possible candidates to take the KTA Secretary General, Vice-president and Technical Committee President positions.
Kim, who succeeds Jun-Pyo Hong in the presidency, has an extensive career path as a politician, currently being President of the Administration and Safety Committee of the National Congress and also member of the Central Committee of the Saenuri Party, winner of the last national elections. In addition, he received an honorary degree by the University of Yonsei, where he graduated in Politics and Diplomatic Sciences. Kim had never been linked to Taekwondo before, so it will be crucial for him to make up a powerful Executive Board that enables him to properly lead the KTA for the next 4 years.
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