Alarmed by stubborn corruption and public unrest, China’s President Hu Jintao is steering the ruling Communist Party to reforms that will make officials more answerable.
But he has resisted calls for deeper democratic change, and critics inside the party question whether his wary changes are enough to cure the country’s ills.
The party’s Central Committee met in Beijing this week to discuss Hu’s ideas for a “harmonious society”, including expanding “inner-party democracy”, the term for strengthened consultation and competition inside the ruling hierarchy. [Full Text]
– Also Reuters’ China Warns Party Officials Not to Form “Gangs”:
The Chinese Communist Party has warned officials not to set up cliques with former colleagues or classmates, in a thinly veiled volley against the so-called Shanghai Gang after the sacking of that city’s party boss.
“From the revelation of some local corruption cases involving ‘cliques’ we can see that some cadres set up these ‘groups’ using the pretext that they are old classmates, colleagues or war-time friends,” the official Xinhua news agency said in a terse, Shanghai-datelined commentary on Friday.
Xinhua mentioned no names, but called the formation of these gangs “a big scourge of inner-Party harmony.”