July 13, 2020 13:01
Seoul citizens will go to the polls again on April 7 next year to elect a new mayor after Park Won-soon killed himself last week.
Also up for grabs is the mayorship of the southern port city of Busan after mayor Oh Keo-don resigned earlier this year over sexual harassment charges.
The ruling Minjoo Party appears to have been caught off guard by two of their stars falling over sexual misconduct.
The party charter stipulates that it will not nominate a candidate if any by-election is called due to a "grave mistake" by one of its members. But it appears determined not to cede the mayorships of the two biggest cities to the opposition.
One party source said "We could end up losing ground in the presidential and local elections in 2022 if we fail to nominate candidates for the by-elections next year."
The main opposition United Future Party has high hopes of clawing back some lost ground in the by-elections.
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