Watchdog leads fight on adultery

Updated: 2014-07-16 06:55

By An Baijie (China Daily USA)

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At least six senior officials have been punished as of Tuesday on allegations they committed adultery as the country's top anti-graft watchdog begins its crackdown on "moral corruption".

The most recent official to be punished is Yang Baohua, former vice-chairman of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference Hunan Provincial Committee - Hunan's top political advisory body - who was expelled on Tuesday from the Communist Party of China.

Disciplinary authorities found that the 67-year-old had taken bribes, wielded his power for the benefit of others, and committed adultery according to a statement by the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection.

Judicial authorities are currently investigating the allegations against Yang. The CCDI did not provide any further details about the allegations, nor did it reveal with whom Yang committing adultery.

He is the sixth senior official accused by the CCDI of committing adultery since early June.

On June 7, the CCDI announced that Party members are governed by rules that are stricter than the country's laws and that Party members must have high moral standards. It also said that officials who commit adultery and leave a negative social impression could be removed from their posts and stripped of their Party membership. Though adultery is not forbidden under China's laws, such behavior is now forbidden under CPC rules.

The CCDI's June 7 statement came after Dai Chunning, former deputy general manager of China Export and Credit Insurance Corp, a State-owned enterprise, was expelled from the Party over allegations of embezzlement, accepting bribes and adultery.

Anti-graft authorities have previously used ambiguous terms to accuse officials of having extramarital relationships, such as "living a degenerate lifestyle" or "moral corruption". There is however no official explanation of what "moral corruption" is, though an official from the top anti-graft watchdog told the Henan Business News that the term means an official has had at least three mistresses.

(China Daily USA 07/16/2014 page5)