Spokesman of Shanghai's Party committee makes debut

08:21, June 23, 2011      

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The first spokesman of the Chinese Communist Party (CPC)'s Shanghai Municipal Committee met with the press from both home and abroad for the first time on Wednesday.

Spokesman Qiu Xin answered several questions on topics ranging from how to ensure fairness during the process of selecting and awarding outstanding Party members, to novel methods for recruiting young CPC members.

The debut of the spokesman was made just eight days ahead of the 90th anniversary of the founding of the CPC, which now has nearly 80 million members.

In addition to his new post, Qiu is also the deputy director of the government information office of China's economic and financial center, also the cradle of the CPC.

The 46-year-old spokesman was previously a senior journalist for the Shanghai-based Jiefang Daily.

The CPC Central Committee first proposed setting up its spokesman system in a decision endorsed by the Fourth Plenary Session of the 17th CPC Central Committee in September 2009.

According to Wang Chen, director of the International Communication Office of the CPC Central Committee, the spokesperson system is key to making Party affairs public, promoting intra-party democracy, improving the party's ability to govern and cultivating a favorable environment for the development of the CPC and the nation.

Last June, 11 departments of the CPC Central Committee, including the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI), the CPC Central Committee's Organization Department and the Publicity Department, named their own spokesmen.

The system has become even more widespread this year, being adopted by Party committees in the provinces of Hunan, Hainan, Jiangsu, Yunnan, Guizhou and Fujian and the municipalities of Beijing and Chongqing, with some provinces even publicizing contact numbers of their spokesmen.

"The spokesman system is growing into a common practice for Party committees. It should be authentic and authoritative," said Luo Zhongmin, a professor with the Party school of the Beijing Municipal Committee of the CPC.

"More importantly, it should serve as a channel to connect the Party with the people," Luo said.

The system also shows that the CPC is taking a more open stance as a ruling party, said He Lisheng, director of the research department of the China Executive Leadership Academy Pudong, or CELAP, an institution that helps train spokesmen for the CPC committees.

Luo Zhongmin believes that an "open and real" communication channel should be ensured, as people have previously complained that they were unable to contact some of the spokesmen through published phone numbers.

Source: Xinhua
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