Lower-level Officials Need More Attention
China Youth Daily November 19
A photo of Li Zhongkai, a local government official in Chuxiong, southwest China’s Yunnan Province, has created a buzz online. The photo showed Li, with dazzling white hair, looking much older than his years. Many raised doubts about the authenticity of Li’s age, who was supposedly born in 1980.
Li’s colleagues stood by him, stating that this dramatic change in hair color was in fact due to hard work. Li worked in one of China’s most remote regions in Dayao County for over three years. His hair turned white while he was working for the relocation project in Wanbi Township between 2011 and 2014.
The case has highlighted the lack of attention given to grassroot-level officials. It’s common for these officials in impoverished areas to work extensive overtime, especially those in charge of poverty alleviation projects which relocate residents to more suitable living areas. Often one official takes on the workload of several people.
Grassroot- level officials should not lift other people out of poverty at the expense of their own health. Relevant government departments should give them adequate attention to reduce their load and enable them to enjoy an improved quality of life.