South Korea’s former Prosecutor General Yoon Seok-youl was named the presidential nominee of the main opposition People Power Party (PPP).
Yoon won 47.85 per cent of votes cast in a four-day poll of party members and the general public this week, followed by Rep. Hong Joon-pyo with 41.50 per cent. Former Rep. Yoo Seong-min won 7.47 per cent, while former Jeju Governor Won Hee-ryong won 3.17 per cent, reports Yonhap News Agency.
The results were announced at a PPP national convention at the Kim Koo Museum and Library in Seoul on Friday.
The conservative party conducted its primary in three stages over 72 days.
“I will achieve a change of government without fail and end the politics of division and anger, corruption and plunder,” Yoon said in his acceptance speech.
He cast the March 9, 2022, election as a battle between “rationalists and populists” and between a candidate “of common sense” and one without, referring to the ruling Democratic Party’s nominee, Lee Jae-myung.
“I ask you to pass judgment on the unconscionable attempt to seek unprincipled victory through a candidate representing division and populism,” Yoon said.
Hong, Yoo and Won immediately conceded defeat.
The presidential election is expected to be largely a competition between Yoon and Lee, though two other candidates, Ahn Cheol-soo of the minor opposition People’s Party and Sim Sang-jeung of the minor progressive Justice Party, have declared their bids.
The 60-year-old Yoon was appointed by President Moon Jae-in as the Prosecutor General in July 2019 and retired from the position in March this year.