LIAO Junbo is a true communist. Everything he did was for the wellbeing of his people. He pursued a dream, which is what the Chinese Dream is about.” This is just one of a deluge of eulogistic comments posted on the website commemorating Liao Junbo.
Liao was vice mayor of Nanping City, Fujian Province, and also a member of the standing committee of the municipal committee. He was killed in a car accident last March while on duty. Within days more than 400,000 people had expressed shock and sadness at the news on WeChat, and condolences continue to stream in to his memorial website today.
President Xi Jinping called on all CPC members and officials to learn from Liao Junbo. What was it about this local magistrate that made millions of Chinese love him?
Liao Junbo’s daughter Liao Zhiqi, who is to start postgraduate studies in the fall, remembers how a classmate asked her what her father’s work was, and she replied “a construction foreman.” That’s how her father described his work.
In 1995 Liao, then a 27-year-old middle school physics teacher, was sent to work in the general office of the munici- pal CPC Committee of Shaowu. Three years later he was appointed magistrate of the city’s Nakou Town. In the ensuing years he was transferred to different posts in local governments at various levels, and also in an industrial consortium. At the time of his death he was vice mayor of Nanping and director of the Administrative Committee of Wuyi New District. In these establishments it was always Liao who oversaw the construction of infrastructure. He witnessed the completion of four industrial parks, half of the new district, and a long list of roads and bridges.
In 1998 Nakou Town was ravaged by floods the like of which had not been seen for a century. Rather than giving