The main opposition Democratic Party (DP) filed a motion calling for the dismissal of Prime Minister Han Duk-soo on Monday, urging President Yoon Suk Yeol to carry out a complete overhaul of the way he runs the government.
The motion to dismiss Han is expected to be put to a vote during a plenary session Thursday, according to the DP.
Under the National Assembly Act, lawmakers are mandated to vote on a dismissal motion for a Cabinet member within 72 hours of its submission to the parliamentary plenary session. The vote can begin 24 hours after the submission.
"Han has failed to manage and has made mistakes in properly recommending the right ministers amid the total chaos in government affairs," Rep. Song Ki-hun, a DP spokesperson, told reporters. "A complete overhaul of the Cabinet is necessary at the moment."
Last week, Yoon nominated a ruling party lawmaker and former three-star Army general for defense minister in a partial Cabinet shakeup that also affected the culture and gender equality ministers.
Earlier in the day, DP floor leader Park Kwang-on also called for the resignation of all Cabinet members as part of the overhaul, saying that otherwise, Yoon's administration would be recorded as the worst-ever since South Korea's democratization.
Park made the appeal in an address at the National Assembly, denouncing a series of recent incidents, including the prosecution's request of an arrest warrant for DP leader Lee Jae-myung and the audit agency's investigation into the alleged manipulation of key economic data during the previous administration.
"(Yoon) should revamp the foundations of government administration, human resources and the current system if he wishes to stay as a successful president," Park said in a speech at the National Assembly.
The floor leader also criticized the prosecution's request of the warrant for Lee over a scandal-ridden land development case and allegations of his involvement in illegal cash remittances to North Korea.
Earlier in the day, the Seoul Central District Prosecutors Office requested the warrant on charges of breach of trust, bribery and other offenses. A court hearing on Lee's arrest warrant can only be held after the National Assembly approves the arrest motion in a plenary vote.
"It amounts to a political maneuver to seek an arrest motion when the regular National Assembly session is under way, even though Lee declared he would waive his privilege and consent to the warrant during a non-session period," Park said.
Park further asserted that a recent inspection by the Board of Audit and Inspection (BAI) into alleged data manipulation was politically motivated.
On Friday, the BAI formally requested the prosecution to investigate 22 former government officials, including all four former presidential chiefs of staff for policy -- Jang Ha-sung, Kim Su-hyun, Kim Sang-jo and Lee Ho-seung -- as well as former Land Minister Kim Hyun-mi.
The BAI concluded that the presidential office and the land ministry had exerted undue pressure on agencies responsible for statistics, compelling them to manipulate official data on income, employment and housing prices since the preceding Moon Jae-in administration assumed office in May 2017.
"Stop political audits immediately," Park demanded, adding this would be their final warning.
Source: Yonhap News Agency