Details about officials
The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection of the Communist Party of China recently made public 10 typical cases involving violations of regulations and measures aimed at promoting frugality and checking extravagance, and extended disciplinary or administrative punishments to several violators, including Fu Xiaoguang, a senior official in Heilongjiang province.
Compared with similar earlier disclosures by the top anti-corruption watchdog, more cases were made public on this occasion and for the first time the offenders were named. This attests to the authorities’ determination to get rid of long-controversial malpractices and incorrect working styles among some officials, a China Business News editorial said on Wednesday.
A month ago, Fu, along with other officials, was criticized by the Heilongjiang provincial authorities, but he was not mentioned by name. Some media expressed dissatisfaction with this, saying that criticism and oversight should not be reduced to a kind of formalism.
The top anti-graft watchdog’s named disclosures are a timely response to public opinion and should be applauded. But aside from such a praiseworthy practice, the authorities should also pluck up the courage to eliminate other long-reviled official malpractices, such as irregularities in the appointment of officials and the reinstating or reassigning of demoted ones.
There is a guideline in place on the accountability of leading Party and government officials, but some loopholes and a lack of details have allowed officials who were removed for malpractices to return to office. This practice seriously compromises the government’s credibility. Clearly a fully transparent information system covering officials’ appointments, demotions and reassignments needs to be swiftly established.
Information on the official appointments of some leading officials’ children and relatives should also be made public to eliminate the malpractice of posts being specially created for the children of local leading officials, which has repeatedly come to light in recent years. Openness and transparency will help increase public oversight and enhance the credibility of the government.
When it comes to the disclosure of officials’ preappointment information, more details, including their past performance and professional capabilities, as well as their personal ethics, should be made public, to facilitate public oversight and squeeze the space available for problematic officials to be promoted.