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Home >> China
UPDATED: 17:39, October 07, 2005
China promises to uproot corrupt officials in coalmine production process amid blasts
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The Chinese government will devote more efforts to root up the local officials in leading positions who have misbehaved in handling coalmine work safety issues, said a senior Chinese official during an interview with Xinhua days earlier.

"China is determined to bring all them to justice," said Li Zhilun, minister of the Ministry of Supervision.

The country has sadly witnessed coalmine tragedies that come one after another, killing dozens of miners, with the latest one on Monday in central China's Henan Province claiming more than 30 lives.

China will take the strictest measures to punish local officials who would dare to cheat investigators by hiding the truth or set barriers to that effect, he said, noting that some of them are quite likely to have got kickbacks from mine owners.

Corruption has proved to be one of the key things that have led to mine blasts in the past. Hundreds of officials had been unveiled as problematic worms in probes carried out by both central and local authorities.

"Corruption by local officials have appeared in every single procedure that relates to the approval, licensing, production and sale practices of coalmines," he said.

Corruptions by those officials have undoubtedly aggravated the risks that the Chinese miners would face when working underground.

The punishment of corruption is the key to the final solving of problems existing with coalmine work safety, said Li Yizhong, head of the China work safety administration, citing the adoption of severe punishing rules as the only path to that end.

"We will work to get rid of 'the coal stained with blood' or 'gross domestic product with blood stains'," he said.

Li said in a recent article that the base condition in China's coalmines would not only hurt the life and property of the people, but also render impact on the healthy development of the coal industry and the country's overall economy and social stability.

China's work safety authority has determined to close 8,648 or 40 percent of the country's mines, a bid which Li Yizhong said would eradiate almost half of China's traps that have been swallowing human lives.

Earlier this month, the State Council, or the Chinese cabinet, promulgated another set of rules that are specially designed for the operation of coalmines.

The rules make clear what responsibility the coalmine owners, local governments and related authorities should bear in coalmine related issues.

"Linkage between coalmine owners and local official has significantly cut the effect of the implementation of laws," said Li Zhilun.

Local officials, especially those in leading positions, he said, will be held liable accordingly together with those directly responsible for mine accidents and the staff in charge of production affairs.

"China's supervision will devote every effort to ensuring all accident probes carried out objectively, fairly and in accordance with laws," he said.

Source: Xinhua


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