Independent Candidate Yu Nan: "China Is Most in Need of Transparency Now" (Updated)

In recent months, citizens have taken to social media to declare their independent candidacies for local election. As a result of the recent government clampdown on these candidates, none were elected as a district level representative in Guangzhou; most were unable even to make it to the very first step of the election–being officially registered as a preliminary candidate. However, on September 1, Yu Nan, a Lanzhou-based independent candidate, revealed through his microblog that he successfully became an officially recognized preliminary candidate in his local neighborhood of Chengguan district in Lanzhou, Gansu Province. Compared to many other independent candidates who use microblogs as major campaign platform, Yu has kept a relatively low profile on Sina microblogging site until September 1–he did not have campaign slogans or posters, thus drawing little attention.

Yu, born in 1964, is a college educated self-employed professional, and he is not affiliated with any political parties in China. According to Yu, he is the only known independent candidate in his district, and possibly in all of Lanzhou. The other three preliminary candidates include a Secretary of a local Department of Revenue, CEO of a state-owned enterprise and a high-ranked local government official.

His announcement tweet was soon re-tweeted over 4,000 times, and he later confirmed on his microblog that hundreds of netizens have contacted him and/or expressed support. After the announcement, he has been campaigning via his microblog in order to succeed in the election, which will be held on September 15. A QQ discussion group of his was then created and is currently run by volunteers.

Following selected posts from Yu’s microblog sent at the beginning of this month. Translated by CDT, with thanks to Marlies Ruck and Sandra.

*@兰州人余男:*我一个平民代表的清廉也许微不足道,给纳税人也节省不了多少钱,但寒碜也要寒碜那些权贵代表,锦衣美食不是荣耀,花纳税人的钱就要为纳税人说真话,真办事,否则就不配花纳税人的钱,就不配叫人大代表。

9月1日 22:09来自新浪微博…….
转发(36)|收藏|评论(51)

As an ordinary citizen representative, my personal integrity may be insignificant, I cannot save much money for taxpayers. But my mere shabby presence is an embarrassment to the elite. Extravagant tastes in clothing and food is not honorable. Spending the the taxpayer’s money means you should speak on the behalf of the taxpayer, address real concerns. Otherwise you do not deserve to spend the taxpayer’s money, you do not deserve to be called a representative of the National People’s Congress.

*@兰州人余男:*如果当选,我和大家一起上下班时挤公交,老百姓所有的苦楚,所有的难心我们一起体会,你有牢骚到我家里来发,我就住在你隔壁,你有委屈我陪你反映,你要xx我给你掏钱复印材料,我要带着挤公交车时的一身臭汗给人大写提案,参加人大活动我绝不花纳税人一分钱,参加人大会我自带干粮,中国当下最需要清廉
If I am elected, when I go to work I will squeeze into public transportation with everyone, all the suffering and difficulty of common people we will experience together, you can come to my house and vent your frustration. I live in your neighborhood, if you feel wronged I will accompany you to report it, if you want xx (to petition ) I will fund the copying of materials. I want to endure the stench of sweat from squeezing into public transportation while also drafting legislation for the National People’s Congress. In attending the National People’s Congress activities I absolutely will not spend one dollar of taxpayer’s money, in attending the People’s Congress I will pay for my own food and board. China is most in need of transparency now.

9月1日 21:16来自新浪微博
转发(149)|收藏|评论(100)
*@兰州人余男:*我的社会经历:1990年大学毕业后参加工作,1999年离职,先后从事过期刊杂志社编采,大学出版社编辑,本人一直热心公益活动,愿意帮助弱势群体维护合法权益。
9月1日 20:56来自新浪微博
转发(12)|收藏|评论(9)

My experience in society: After graduating in 1990 I went to work, in 1999 I quit. Next I acted as a magazine editor and journalist, then a university press editor. Throughout this all, I myself enthusiastically participated in community service, willing to help the marginalized and protect legal rights and benefits.

*@兰州人余男:*我也曾是下岗职工,我为下岗职工说话;我现在就是最普通的底层市民,我关注家家户户的菜篮子及其一切日常琐事;我的做人原则是:只为百姓讲真话,不为权贵唱颂歌,我只代表广大选民的利益。
9月1日 20:55来自新浪微博
转发(31)|收藏|评论(20)

I once was a laid off worker, I speak on the behalf of laid off workers: I currently am the most ordinary and common urban citizen, I am concerned with the income, and everyday affairs of all households; my principal is: only speak for the common people, don’t sing the praises of the elite, I only represent the interests of the majority of voters.

*@兰州人余男:*请投下你珍贵的一票,选我当人大代表,我义务为你跑腿、办事,维护你的合法权益,选个邻居当代表,每天都能看得见,遇到困难时找得到。如果当选,我将设立人大代表联系卡,广大选民可以随时联系我,我帮您解忧排难,和你共度一切人生难关。 谢谢大家的信任!
9月1日 20:54来自新浪微博
转发(132)|收藏|评论(77)

Please place your precious vote, select me to act as the representative for the National People’s Congress, I voluntarily serve you, handle your affairs, protect your legal rights and benefits. Select your neighbor to act as representative, everyone can see me everyday, when you encounter difficulty you can find me. If I am elected, I will establish a National People’s Congress Representative contact card , so voters can get in touch with me at any time. I will help you solve your issues, together we will all overcome difficulties. Thank you everyone for having confidence in me!

今天下午3.28分,我独立参选兰州市城关区第17届人大代表侯选人的联名推荐登记表已经提交成功。 经确认:我的联名推荐人中共有17人在本选区的选民资格有效,17人的联名推荐签字真实有效。

Today 3:28 PM, my joint endorsement registration form for participating as an independent candidate as Lanzhou Chengguan district’s 17th National People’s Congress representative has already been submitted successfully. Confirmation: my endorsers all together have 17 people who are qualified and legal voters in this district, 17 people’s signatures that are legal.

@兰州人余男:性 别:男 ;出生年月:1964年10月3日 ;文化程度:大学;民族:汉 ;无党派人士,无宗教信仰;职业:自由职业者。

Sex: male; birthdate: October 3rd, 1964; educational degree: university; ethnicity: Han; no party or religious affiliation; profession: self-employed.

有本地热心的陌生网友建立了“兰州余男选举志愿者”群,群号:172976574,,凡本地乘公交车需要1小时以上路程和兰外路途遥远以及全国各地网友要求志愿助选的不必花费交通费找余男本人,均可通过加入该群进行志愿助选,该群由本地未曾谋面的志愿者管理。谢谢

There is a local, enthusiastic Netizen whom I have never met who established “Lanzhou Yu Nan election volunteers” group, group number: 172976574. For all locals who take public transportation for more than an hour, people living outside Lanzhou, and Netizens from across the country who wish to help campaign do not need to pay for transportation cost to find Yu Nan. By joining this group you can all help campaign. This group is managed by local volunteers who have never met before. Thank you.

*@ 兰州人余男:*我的有效联名推荐人@毅德:你说你的家人也是下岗工人,下岗工人的苦和愁没人体会到,只有下岗的人才知道,经过我们的几次长谈, 所以你冒险推荐我,签完推荐人名字后,你再三叮咛我“要保重”。兄弟:我的身后不光有@于建嵘、@笑蜀、@薛蛮子、@梁树新,还有数小时内数万全国各地网 友的狂轰问候
9月1日 17:42来自新浪微博
转发(559)|收藏|评论(293)

My candidacy endorsement Yi De: You said your family members are also laid-off workers. No one but laid-off workers knows their pain and worry. Following many long discussions, you took the risk to endorse me. After signing your name as a sponsor, you repeatedly cautioned me to take care of myself. Brother: standing behind me is not only Yu Jianrong, Xiao Shu, Xue Manzi, Liang Shuxin, but also within a few hours tens of thousands of netizens from across the nation have sent me countless greetings.

*@ 兰州人余男:*谢谢@薛晓春,等24位网友,我们以前没有见过面,线上认识后才知道是一个选区的,你们不怕种种干扰,勇敢的拿起了签字笔联名推 荐我,你们说,第一次见面时看见我剃着光头,鞋子上沾着泥巴,你们第一眼就认定了我。兄弟姐妹们,你们推荐我,我替大家维权,不为百姓着想的任何一条政策 我都投反对票。
9月1日 16:28来自新浪微博
转发(48)|收藏|评论(46)

Thank you to the 24 netizens, including Xue Xiaochun. We have never met face to face before, and not until after meeting online did I know we are one electoral district. You are not afraid of any interference, you bravely signed your name and endorsed me. You said, when it was the first time you saw my bald head, my shoes wet with mud, your first glance confirmed your convictions in me. Brothers, sisters, you endorsed me, I will defend your rights on your behalf, I will veto any policy that does not benefit the people.

*@兰州人余男:*汗水和泪水可以融化一切坚冰,因为它来至丹田,因为它是滚烫的……
9月1日 15:44来自新浪微博
转发(10)|收藏|评论(28)

Sweat and tears can melt the ice [we can overcome difficulties], because it comes from our heart, because it is powerful…

*@ 兰州人余男:*回复@CollierV:集中言谢,数万人狂轰滥炸,电话、QQ、微博@,天南地北,真的很令人感动,无法一一回复大家,很抱 歉,太抱歉了。中国有希望,民主,不是西人的专利,我们中国人不缺理想和智慧,不缺追求公平正义的勇气,不缺良知……//@CollierV:转发此微 博:第一个//@张奈儿_阡陌花迹:看见的朋友转一

In response to @CollierV: I want to collectively express my gratitude, there are countless phone calls, QQ messages, weibo posts, coming from everywhere, it is truly moving. It is impossible to respond to each of you, I am very sorry, so sorry. China has hope, democracy, it is not unique to Western people. Chinese have no shortage of ideals or wisdom, no shortage in the pursuit of justice, no shortage of morality…

*@ 兰州人余男:*泪水打湿我的眼睛,一样的泪水,不一样的感受。新浪微博,你推进了国家的进步,新浪微博,你见证了老百姓参政意识的觉醒,我们不 要炸弹,我们要一人一票,民主自由是世界潮流,中国,不仅仅是官家的,更是咱老百姓的。曾几何时,看到@刘萍1964、@梁树新、@夏商、@李承鹏,的落 荒,我也曾独自嚎啕大哭。
9月1日 12:18 来自新浪微博
转发(1148) | 评论(496)

Tears moisten my eyes, the same tears from before, but not the same feeling. Sina Weibo, you drive forward the country’s progress. Sina Weibo, you are witness to the people’s political consciousness awakening. We don’t want to bomb, we want one person one vote. Democratic freedom is the global trend. China, it is not only for government officials, it is even more for us the people. Not long ago, we saw Liu Ping, Liang Shuxin, Xia Shang and Li Chengpeng defeated, I also cried alone.

*@兰州人余男:*接受网友建议,拜票从扫街扫楼开始,着手成立选举志愿者服务团
9月1日 13:49来自新浪微博
转发(97)|收藏|评论(110)

Upon the the advice of netizens, I begin campaigning by canvasing the streets and buildings. I begin by establishing an election volunteer service group.

*@兰州人余男:*温州动车发生事故以后,看到难属们的无辜、无奈、无门,我把自己一个人关在房里大哭,生活在这样一个国家,不管你是中产还是富商,遇见不平我们只能无助,只有把留下来的泪水再默默地咽进肚子里,国家必须改变,一人一票,挽救中华。
9月1日 12:27来自新浪微博
转发(717)|收藏|评论(292)

After the Wenzhou train accident occurred, I saw the victims’ relatives were innocent, helpless, and had no place to turn, I myself sat at home and cried, life in this type of a country, regardless if you are middle or upper class, to see such injustice we can only feel helpless. You can only force yourself to silently swallow your tears. This country must change, one person one vote, save China.

*@兰州人余男:*选举委员会已经把四个候选人全部张榜公布了,其中榜上前三人全部是有关部门的领导,有税务局的书记,有国有企业的CEO,有政府一把手,只有我是独立候选人,是最底层的老百姓,选个街坊当代表,新浪微博独立参选从兰州打开缺口了
9月1日 12:06来自新浪微博
转发(4421)|收藏|评论(1733)

The election committee already published the complete list of four candidates. On the list the first three people are all are leaders of respective departments, there is the tax bureau secretary, the CEO of an SOE, a government official. I am the only independent candidate. I belong to the ordinary people, elect a neighbor to act as representative. Lanzhou is pioneering independent elections via Sina Weibo.

*@兰州人余男:*已经通过了,候选人已经张榜公布了,迎接新的挑战,选民分布在近20平方公里10000多户,现在开始至9月15号早8点之前全力开始拜票,紧急征集本地网友志愿者,所有费用本人负责,希望大家再不要冷漠了。

It has already been approved, the candidacy list is already published. I am welcoming a new challenge. Voters come from more than 10,000 households within a 20 square km range. Starting from now until 8 am on Sept. 15th, I will be campaigning diligently, recruiting local Netizen volunteers. I will be responsible for all expenses. I hope that not everyone will be indifferent again.

For more on the independent candidates, see an article from the Washington Post, and previous translations from CDT.

Update (9/14/11)
: Yu’s candidacy was revoked on Sept. 8 for no reason despite the fact that he was one of the four “official” candidates. There are now only 3 officially registered candidates–and they only need 3. CDT is translating relevant tweets from Yu about his current situation and will post them shortly.