Govt asks netizens for help in exposing graft

Updated: 2014-04-08 09:15

By An Baijie (China Daily)

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China's top anti-graft agency has called on netizens to expose corruption, such as lavish banquets at private clubs, as part of its crackdown on graft ahead of the holiday season.

Corrupt activities like using public funds to buy gifts, paying for personal travel and holding banquets are likely during the upcoming May Day holiday, according to the Communist Party of China Central Commission for Discipline Inspection.

Officials' corrupt activities have become more difficult to track, the commission said on its website on Friday.

In its online discussion portal, the commission encouraged the public to expose corruption.

The move was aimed at implementing the "eight-point" guideline issued by the CPC Central Committee in late 2012, which requires officials to avoid extravagance and excessive bureaucracy.

Several netizens have since answered the call and reported various cases of corruption on the commission's website.

"I heard that some government officials have lavish banquets at rural restaurants, and the supervision of such behavior should be enhanced," a netizen posted.

Other netizens have commented on the problems of corruption, including bribery in State-owned enterprises and the misuse of government vehicles.

Wu Yuliang, deputy secretary of the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, has said that the Labor Day holiday is a key period for anti-graft authorities since many corrupt activities have occurred during such festivities.

Excessive spending on receptions, using public money for recreational trips, and giving and receiving gifts paid for with public money during the holiday are strictly prohibited, he said.

Disciplinary authorities at all levels should make feedback from the public and media over these issues easily accessible, and officials who are found to have violated the rules must be punished accordingly, he said.

A total of 30,420 officials were punished by disciplinary authorities last year for violating the frugality rules, according to statistics released by the commission in January.

The commission has also announced the launch of the third round of nationwide discipline inspections since the Party's leadership transition in 2012. The move covers 10 provincial-level areas and four other units.

Since May 2013, the commission has carried out two rounds of inspections, deploying anti-corruption officials to local governments, ministries, State-run institutions and State-owned enterprises.

Zhou Shuzhen, a professor of anti-graft research at Renmin University of China, said that by fighting hidden corrupt activities, the anti-graft authorities have made governance more transparent.

A number of luxurious private clubs have become a haven for corrupt activities in which government officials accept bribes from businessmen, and such activities have hurt government's image, she said.

The anti-graft authorities should continue to expose such cases of corruption to gain the people's trust, she said.

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