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Scandal cannot undermine political system

Updated: 2013-12-29 22:14
( Xinhua)

BEIJING - The publication of the mass vote fraud scandal in central China will not undermine the system of people's congresses as the country's fundamental political system, but will help improve it.

Preliminary investigation shows the 56 lawmakers elected to Hunan provincial people's congress from Hengyang City offered bribes to 518 of municipal lawmakers and another 68 staff. The total amount of money involved exceeded 110 million yuan (18.14 million U.S. dollars).

The system of people's congresses is China's fundamental political system. The system, which fully embodies the common aspiration and fundamental interests of the Chinese people, cannot be challenged or undermined.

However, involving such a huge number of lawmakers and a large amount of money, the fraud is serious in nature and has a vile impact. It is a challenge to the system of people's congresses, socialist democracy, law and Party discipline.

Prof. Jiao Hongchang, deputy dean of Law School of China University of Political Science and Law, said the case should be dealt with in a strict way, as it involves group behavior.

"Otherwise, bribery in election will develop into a custom and evolve into a new corruption trend," added Jiao.

Practice has showed the advantage of the people's congresses system. It conforms to China's national conditions and embodies the nature of a socialist country.

Under the leadership of the Communist Party of China (CPC), the Chinese people, through various levels of people's congresses, exercise their political power as masters of the country.

The People's Daily, flagship of the CPC Central Committee, said in an editorial to be carried on Monday that the investigation of the case showed the Party's clear attitude in safeguarding the authority of the people's congress system.

"We need to deal with all problems or difficulties in China's political and economic development in a serious way, rather than refusing to face up to problems," said a netizen with a name of "wangge" in, a major web portal of China.

In the meantime, law experts said not only suspected law and discipline breakers should be punished, but the people's congresses system need to be improved, with the case as an opportunity to promote democracy and rule of law.

"The electoral procedure for deputies of people's congresses should be further improved," said Prof. Jiao. "Supervision of the procedure should be strengthened and social participation be expanded."

Jiao added that the legal binding effect need to be strengthened, and prohibitive provisions and code of conducts should be introduced against bribery.

Prof. Wang Zhenmin, dean of School of Law with Tsinghua University, suggested that election procedure be more transparent and fair, allowing the public to see the whole procedure.

The investigation and publicity of the case also showed China's determination in anti-corruption drive. After the 18th National Congress of the CPC, the Party vowed to crack down on both "flies" in the grassroots and "tigers" in high ranks.

"The case in Hengyang showed that no matter who they are and how many persons are involved, the authorities will crack down on the corruption case severely," said Jiao.