20,000 officials broke new rules

By Fang Yang Source:Global Times Published: 2013-12-3 1:08:02

Nearly 20,000 Chinese officials have been punished for breaches of new guidelines put in place last year, China's discipline watchdog said Monday.

Among these, 4,675 Party members at different levels were found to have had involvement in 17,380 cases.

Punishments were handed down to violators by administrative or Party discipline agencies by the end of October, according to the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) of the Communist Party of China (CPC).

The "eight-point" bureaucracy and formalism rules introduced by the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee on December 4, 2012 asked Party officials to reduce pomp, ceremony, bureaucratic visits and meetings, the Xinhua News Agency reported.

The CCDI will further improve its supervision system by sending disciplinary inspection agencies, which used to be dispatched only to supervise government departments, to the Party and state organs, said Li Xueqin, head of the research division under the CCDI.

Meanwhile, the CCDI's inspection groups will supervise not only officials working in local government, but also those who work in State-owned enterprises and public institutions, Li said, adding politburo members who hold concurrent positions as local Party secretaries will also be put onto the supervision list.

"These two important reform steps signal that China's anti-graft campaign has entered a new era and the watchdogs are to be given more power," said Zhang Xixian, a professor with the Party School of the CPC Central Committee.

The move is in line with the anti-graft campaign that was advocated in the decisions on comprehensive reform released after the conclusion of the Third Plenary Session of the 18th CPC Central Committee, said Li.  

The decision urged for the creation of systems to punish and prevent corruption and called for institutional innovation and procedures to guarantee anti-corruption work.

Recently, several senior officials were fired or put under investigation for suspected serious law and discipline violations, in line with the intensified supervision by inspection teams across China.

Guo Youming, vice governor of Hubei Province, has been removed from his post for "suspected serious disciplinary violations." He is under investigation, CCDI said Wednesday.

The latest official to be caught up in the anti-corruption drive is Dai Chunning, a deputy general manager with China Export and Credit Insurance Corporation, who was put under investigation Sunday, Xinhua reported. 

The first batch of inspection teams sent to investigate reported misdeeds by officials concluded their tour in September. They gave feedback to local government departments, state enterprises, universities, and other bodies. The second batch of inspectors, divided into 10 groups, was sent to central government departments, regional governments and State-owned enterprises in early November.

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