Wu hails progress of China's legal, political system
Updated: 2013-03-08 22:04
BEIJING -- China's top legislator Wu Bangguo highlighted progress in legislation and the system of the people's congresses over the past five years Friday at the annual national legislative session.
Wu delivered the work report of the 11th National People's Congress (NPC) Standing Committee for the last time as the NPC Standing Committee chairman.
Over the past five years, the NPC and its Standing Committee deliberated on 93 bills, legal interpretations and draft decisions on legal issues and passed 86 of them, Wu said.
In 2010, a socialist system of laws with Chinese characteristics was established on schedule, he said.
The system is based on the national conditions and realities in China, meets the needs of reform, opening up and socialist modernization, fully reflects the will of the Party and the people and is rooted in the Constitution, Wu said.
It is "a major milestone" of China's socialist democracy and socialist legal system, and "an important indicator" of the maturity of the socialist system with Chinese characteristics, and it has great practical importance and far-reaching historical significance, he said.
Besides legislation, the NPC and its Standing Committee, as the country's highest organ of state power, have exercised the duty of supervision on the government and judicial system and decided on major state affairs.
In the past five years, Chen Weilan, a member of the 11th NPC Standing Committee, met with her fellow lawmakers every two months to discuss bills.
"Our schedule was quite tight during every meeting. There were always things to do," she said when recalling her role and contribution as a national lawmaker. "The amendment to the criminal procedure law impressed me most as it followed the universal trend of protecting human rights and safeguarding procedural justice."
Chen and her colleagues also took part in lots of fact-finding programs to check the implementation of laws, especially those affecting common people's life. LEGISLATION ON FAST TRACK
Over the past decade with Wu as the top legislator, more than 200 bills, legal interpretations and decisions have been passed, including several very important laws and law amendments.
Amended in 2004, the Constitution incorporated the principle of "respecting and safeguarding human rights." Eight years later, the same principle was written into the criminal procedure law.
Anti-Secession Law, adopted in 2005, first legalized the principle of promoting the peaceful reunification across the Taiwan Strait and opposing "Taiwan independence."
The landmark Property Rights Law, enacted in 2007, established the principle of equal protection of property rights for all.
With the Electoral Law revised in 2010, deputies to the 12th NPC were elected using the same population ratio for both rural and urban areas for the first time.
The Criminal Law, amended in 2010, eliminated capital punishment for 13 economic-related non-violent offences, a drop of 19.1 percent.
The year 2013 is the first year to implement the guidelines of the 18th Communist Party of China (CPC) National Congress and for the new national legislature to exercise its duty, Wu said.
He expected the 12th NPC to develop a more inclusive and effective democracy of the people and to tighten supervision on top administrative and judicial departments.
The new national legislature should promote the rule of law, he said.
"We will strengthen constraints and oversight of the exercise of power, oversee and support state bodies in exercising their power in accordance with statutory mandate and procedures," Wu said.
The top legislator's remark was echoed by lawmakers.
NPC Standing Committee member Liu Xirong expected the national legislature to play a bigger role in examining the government budget, as well as limiting the administrative power.
A total of 2,987 deputies were elected to the 12th NPC but one deputy, Shao Zhanwei, died of a heart attack in Beijing Wednesday during the ongoing annual session.
Deputies attending Friday's plenary meeting mourned over Shao's death at the beginning of the meeting.