China: Xi tells attendees at Party school to focus on study
Beijing: Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping, who is officially projected to succeed President Hu Jintao as Communist Party chief later this year, has asked party officials to stop using Party schools to form groups or networks and instead focus on learning.
Xi, also the president of the Party School of the Communist Party of China Central Committee, asked officials not to get distracted by other issues during their stay at the top Party school here.
Teachers and students of the Party's education system interpreted Xi's remarks as a directive to focus on learning rather than "taking advantage of a houseful of officials to create relationships, as has happened before", state-run China Daily reported today.
Xi's stern words came in the back drop of comments by Party School's spokesman Luo Zongyi that "a few cases" exist where a number of students were busy socialising and not working hard during classes.
Lin Zhe, a professor at the school, said some participants of the courses have a clear aim to build networks. "Students need self-discipline and to supervise themselves during their stays," Lin told the Daily.
Disgraced party leader Bo Xilai, who was sacked from all posts this year after his wife Gu Kailai was accused of murdering a British businessman, reportedly has the support of faction within the party, which wanted to revive old Mao era hard-line policies.
In power since the formation of People's Republic of China in 1949, the Communist Party has a host of schools which focuses on teaching ideological and political perspectives for officials at various levels.
Many budding party cadre use their stay at schools to form networks which acts as peer groups or factions within the party. The Communist Party of China has about 82 million members all over the country.
This is the second time that Xi did some plain speaking to the Party officials in recent times.
Last year, Xi while calling for creation of a tolerant environment to encourage new ideas asked the party officials to rid of lengthy boring speeches which were often laced with empty words and rhetoric.
Instead they should attempt to reconnect the party with people, he said in a candid speech at a Party meet.
He asked new cadre of party must improve their speeches and writings promoting independent-thinking.
He warned that if current rhetorical styles continue to proliferate, Party's authority would be undermined and its officials would be increasingly isolated from public.
His message to the party officials, who were caught in a web of confusion over the new system of capitalist economy with Communist Party dictatorship apparently, was to create tolerant environment in changing China.
Attention is focused on Xi as he is officially projected to get elected as the General Secretary of the Party and President of the Country at the 18th Party Congress which is expected to be held in coming weeks here.
The Congress is scheduled to replace the entire top brass of the leadership including Hu and Prime Minister Wen Jiabao who would be retiring at the end of this year after a decade long stint.
Xi, along with Vice Premier Li Keqiang, was projected to take over as President and Premier along with new Central Committee to rule the country for the next ten years.
Son of Xi Zhongxun, one of the founders of the Communist guerrilla movement in China along with Mao Zedong, Xi rose the ranks of the party the hard way.
Still an enigma about his political perspectives, Xi last year launched a new project to rewrite the history of the CPC "mainly to correct errors" made during the Cultural Revolution led by Mao Zedong.
The present set of leader including Xi, who are strong followers of Dang Xiaoping who replaced Mao, regard Cultural Revolution as an event that brought great calamity to the country, causing serious setbacks and loss of life.