Chinese Communist Party steps in to root out graft in Army

Last Updated: Tuesday, September 28, 2010 - 15:47

Beijing: The military arm of China`s
ruling Communist Party has issued new disciplinary regulations
to counter rampant corruption in the Chinese Army, the first
such intervention by the powerful commission in response to
increasing cases of graft.

The Peoples Liberation Army (PLA), which operates
under a veil of secrecy has been beset by spreading corruption
in its ranks and the fresh guidelines are aimed at weeding out
corrupt practices.
For the first time in its history, the Central
Military Commission (CMC), the most powerful body that
controls China`s military forces has issued such regulations
specifying principles, responsibilities, organisations and
work procedures for the discipline inspection committees (DIC)
in the army to crack down on corrupt officials, the official
PLA Daily reported.

The regulations were approved by President Hu Jintao,
who is also Chairman of the CMC.

Those suspected of committing crimes are investigated
by the DIC first just like government officials.

The public knows little about corruption cases in the
military due to limited access, but it doesn`t mean the
military is immune to corruption, state-run Global Times said.

The most astonishing corruption case was that of Wang
Shouye, the former deputy commander of the navy who was
accused of accepting more than 160 million yuan (USD 24
million) in bribes.

Wang, 67, is reported to have spent more than 12
million yuan on five mistresses.

His case came to light when Ji-ang, one of the
mistresses became angry over Wang`s refusal to part with few
million Yuan after she became pregnant and reported his sexual
exploits to superiors.

He was stripped of his post and received a death
sentence with a two-year reprieve after he was convicted in
2006.
There have also been frequent allegations about the
recruitment process.

It is an open secret that many officers in charge of
enlistment solicit bribes from those eager to join the army,
Global Times said in its report.

Hong-Kong based Wen Wei Po reported in April that
unfairness in the military, buying presents for senior
officers with public funds and building luxurious facilities
are some common trends.

In May 2009, the CMC issued a notice warning senior
military officers not to pursue a luxurious lifestyle, be
diligent, and remain loyal to the Party.

The notice also stressed tightened supervision over
senior military officers.

After the Cultural Revolution (1966-76), the CMC
decided to establish discipline inspection committees within
the Party committees at different levels in the army in 1978.

Bao Shixiu, a senior military strategist at the
Chinese Academy of Military Science said the new regulations
showed CMC`s determination to counter corruption, but the
results of such measures remain to be seen.

"Corruption does exist in the army, just like it
exists in other areas of society. Military power is
highly-concentrated and it is directly related to state
security, which makes anti-corruption work more difficult than
in other social organs," he said.

"The DIC should be independent enough, but now it is
still under the leadership of the Party committee," Bao said.

Mao Shoulong, a professor of public administration
research at Renmin University of China, observed that
corruption in army is the result of lack of third-party
supervision.

PTI



First Published: Tuesday, September 28, 2010 - 15:47

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