Defense ministry strengthens whistleblower protection
SEOUL, The defense ministry has revised its disciplinary action ordinance to strengthen protection for whistleblowers that expose corruption cases in the military establishment, officials said Friday.
Under the revision that took effect on Wednesday, any uniformed officer or public official in the military who attempts to track down a whistleblower will face heavy punishments, including dismissal and expulsion.
Those who issue a directive to hunt down an internal informant or get involved in any such search will be dismissed. Those who take retaliatory actions against a whistleblower will be expelled from the armed services.
When a service member is dismissed, his or her pension will be slashed by 25 percent, while when one is fired, the pension payment will be halved. In either case, he or she will be banned from landing public service jobs for up to five years after the disciplinary action.
The revision also stipulates that anyone who fails to fulfill an obligation to properly protect a whistleblower will face dismissal or demotion.
The revision came amid stepped-up efforts to stamp out corruption in the defense establishment and arms industry. President Moon Jae-in has denounced any irregularities in the defense industry as "acts aiding and abetting enemies."
Source: Yonhap News Agency