S.Korea: Moon expects March presidential election to bring hope for future

SEOUL: President Moon Jae-in stated on Saturday that the next presidential election in March will bring hope for the future, with voters choosing between two primary candidates in a tight race. In a New Year's message posted on social media, Moon stated, "An election to pick a new president lies ahead," adding that he "expects an election that provides hope for the future together with people."

The presidential election is set for March 9, and recent polls have shown that Lee Jae-myung, the ruling party's presidential nominee, has a lead over Yoon Suk-yeol, the leading opposition contender.

Moon, whose single five-year term ends in May, said he will make every effort till the conclusion of his term to make 2022 a year of leaping forward as a leading nation. Moon extended his gratitude to public health professionals for their tireless efforts throughout the Covid-19 outbreak, which is now in its third year. Moon also complimented small business owners and self-employed persons for bracing for the pandemic's economic effects.

Moon expressed his gratitude by saying, "I deeply thank anti-epidemic and medical workers for defending the anti-epidemic front line, small merchants and self-employed people for enduring difficulties, essential workers for supporting daily life, and people for thinking of neighbours' safety together." Health officials are dealing with an increase in critical cases amid concerns about the spread of the highly transmissible omicron strain, thus stricter social distancing regulations will be extended for another two weeks until January 16.

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