Roland Soong of EastSouthWestNorth translates an interview with Wu Hao, deputy director of the Yunnan provincial party committee publicity department, known most notably for his department’s actions after the “Elude the Cat” and “Elementary school prostitutes” cases:
Q: In reviewing your work over the past year from the “Elude the Cat” case to the “Elementary school prostitutes” case, the former case has been settled and the latter is being tried in court. How do you look at these two cases today?
A: From the angle of the publicity department, we think that we were just doing our job to the best of our ability. But many publicity departments, as well as the media, want to treat our handling of these two cases as case studies in open information.
Q: Landmark cases?
A: Landmark case studies. That is why many public members will have a question: Why do weird things only occur in Yunnan? Actually, weird things don’t just happen in Yunnan. They occur everywhere. They occur all over China. But our environment for opinion supervision is better. We dare to be more open and we dare to expose these cases under the sunshine. That is all.
For example, in the case of “Elude the Cat,” we organized a civilian investigation team. Actually we thought that this was a very complete realization of the respect and protection of the rights to know, to express, to participate and to supervise as proposed in the Seventeenth Congress. Why do I say that this was a relatively complete realization of these four rights?
When we organized a netizen investigation, it satisfied people’s right to know. Through their investigation into the truth of the matter, their right to know is realized.