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24 October 2017

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10/11/2006 CHINA

Central Committee's plenum ends with 15 years worth of pledges

In a sign that not all is well in the land and that corruption is rampant, the in camera meeting's final communiqué talks about the need for ethics. The next party congress is scheduled for late next year. Hu's political rival, Zeng Qinghong, is tasked to organise the event.

Beijing (AsiaNews) – The 16th Central Committee of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) concluded its plenary session or plenum on a low key note today. The four-day meeting of the 350-strong body listened to the party's general secretary Hu Jintao and looked at ways to "build a more harmonious society", this in a country beset by contradictions induced by unbridled economic development and rampant corruption. The plenum was held in camera and the only details about what went on behind closed doors are in its final communiqué reported by the Xinhua news agency.

In the press release party leaders do acknowledge that in China there "are quite many contradictions and issues that impair social harmony" but goes on to name pledges for the future.

"The party," Xinhua reports, "will in the next 15 years commit itself to improving democratic legal system and human rights protection, narrowing wealth gap, increasing employment, improving public service of the government, promoting people's moral standards, securing public order and protecting the environment [sic]."

Whilst economic growth will remain a priority, the party stressed the importance of shared cultural and ethnical values that reward and disgrace. The recent sacking of top party officials like Shanghai's party secretary Chen Liangyu, who is accused of corruption, probably explains the decision to adopt some minimum ethical standards.

The communiqué calls on party members to "consolidate [its] ideological and ethical foundation" and urges greater efforts to improve anti-corruption mechanisms and enhance supervision over top officials and organisations. A "sound ethos within the party should be cultivated to bring along [a] healthy ethos among the general public and government officials, so as to create harmonious relations between the party and the masses," the statement said.

For years, the top party brass condemned corruption whilst failing to stop it. This, in the meantime, has led to rising social unrest as a result of unscrupulous local party officials. Last year alone, the total number of incidents topped 87,000.

For plenum members though, despite the problems, the Communist Party remains the leading institution and the building of a harmonious society is a "strategic task" under the guidance of Marxism, Leninism, and the thought of Mao Zedong, Deng Xiaoping and Jiang Zemin.

After the self-congratulatory part, the communiqué announced that the next party congress will "be held in the second half of 2007", probably in October.

Unofficial sources said that Hu Jintao named his chief political rival Zeng Qinghong to lay the groundwork for next year's crucial Communist Party congress. Zeng, a protégé of former President and party boss Jiang Zemin, rose through the ranks of the Shanghai Gang, an influential group of Communist leaders and business executives.

However for some, the choice is another sign of Hu's growing confidence. The Shanghai Gang, which had hitherto wielded considerable power, is now suffering the consequences of the fall from grace of the city's party chief, Chen Liangyu.

For others, the decision to appoint Zeng is an attempt to enlist him to share power so that both could benefit. In so doing they would adhere to a maxim attributed to Deng Xiaoping: "United we win together; divided we fall together."






See also

08/10/2008 CHINA
Central committee plenum to discuss limited reforms for Chinese farmers
Starting tomorrow till Sunday the Central Committee of the Communist Party will hold its plenary session in Beijing. Rural reforms, poverty and unrest will be on the table. At present, farmers have no say in what happens to them. Rural incomes are four to five time lower than those in the cities.

31/12/2007 CHINA
Hu Jintao on religious freedom
The politburo’s session on religions was barely reported. During the meeting the party’s general secretary spoke, praising the contribution of religions to a “harmonious society.” An expert on the Chinese Church looks at the development.

27/09/2007 CHINA
Petitioners’ village torn down ahead of party congress
A few days before the 17th Communist Party Congress in mid-October, Beijing authorities tear down the neighbourhood that for years housed petitioners who come to the capital to complain against government abuses.

30/09/2008 CHINA
In a few days Central Committee plenum to start country makeover
Party leaders are expected to push for wide-ranging reforms that will reorganise rural areas, eliminate rural-urban gap and improve the lives of hundreds of millions of people. Experts say people are waiting for democratic reforms and the recognition of their rights. Now it is a time to act, not make promises.

18/09/2004 china
Is Jiang Zemin stepping down?



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