Seoul, Sep 30 (UiTV/IANS) – South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol saw his approval rating slump to the lowest level again after his remarks caught on a hot mic in New York triggered an uproar at home, a poll revealed on Friday.
In the poll of 1,000 voters conducted by Gallup Korea from Tuesday to Thursday, 24 per cent positively assessed Yoon’s job performance, down 4 percentage points from the previous week, while 65 per cent gave a negative assessment, up 4 percentage points in the same period, reports Yonhap News Agency.
It marks the lowest approval rating since the first week of August when the weekly figure reached 24 per cent, the lowest since Yoon took office in May, in the wake of his unpopular personnel appointments and the leadership turmoil in the ruling party.
The pollster attributed the result to the hot mic controversy.
Though the recording was not clear due to noise, many thought Yoon was talking about the US Congress and President Joe Biden.
Yoon’s office rejected the claim, saying he was referring to South Korea’s opposition-controlled National Assembly and did not mention Congress or Biden.
As reasons for disapproval, 17 per cent cited diplomacy, followed by a lack of experience and qualifications at 13 per cent, careless remarks at 8 per cent, and negligence of economic and livelihood issues at 7 per cent.
The main opposition Democratic Party has branded Yoon’s trip to the UK, New York and Canada as a diplomatic fiasco fraught with gaffes and blunders, including the hot mic incident, his failure to pay respect to the coffin of Queen Elizabeth II and the lack of a tangible outcome from a summit with Japan.
Thirty-three per cent responded the trip was helpful to national interest, while 54 per cent gave negative evaluations, citing a lack of tangible results, failure to pay respect during the queen’s funeral and foul language use.