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CPC develops democracy over last decade (2)


16:48, November 05, 2012

"All of the nominees enjoy a high reputation in their respective areas and they have been widely recognized by the masses and CPC members," said Shi.

At the community level, public nominations and direct elections have been carried out more extensively since 2001. The system calls for candidates to be selected via recommendations from CPC members, the public and CPC organizations. The CPC branch secretary, vice secretary and members of village CPC committees are all elected directly by village CPC conferences.

Sun Shuihu, the branch CPC secretary of the village of Qingshan in East China's Jiangxi province, was elected in this way. Sun led the villagers in repaving a road to the village and expanded local agriculture by inviting outside investment, all within six months of taking his post.

"I must walk the talk or my fellow villagers will blame me for eating my words and my reputation will be tarnished," said 49-year-old Sun.

The public nomination and direct election system has boosted participation among CPC members. Among Qingshan village's 43 CPC members, 39 took part in the election.

"The wide promotion of democracy at the community level, with self-governance, public nominations and direct elections as its embodiment, is the most representative achievement of socialist democracy in the past 10 years," said Chi Fulin, executive president of the China Institute for Reform and Development.

The process of realizing democracy has been far from satisfactory, as procedures are sometimes poorly implemented. Some candidates seek posts through bribes and behind-the-scenes manipulation.

But power is no longer subject to a few people, so the public's need to participate in the decision-making process and their willingness to supervise have both increased.

For governments at higher levels, it has become more common to encourage participation by the public.

For instance, since 2006, public representatives of communities and neighborhoods in the city of Wuxi in East China's Jiangsu province have been able to veto construction projects through secret ballots.

Publicity and transparency are the preconditions for the people to supervise and participate in the decision-making process. In the past 10 years, public relations regarding CPC and government affairs have seen progress.

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