Eight government officials in northwest China's Gansu Province were sacked or warned after media report revealed massive funds for earthquake reconstruction might have been abused for image projects, leaving quake victims living in camps and substandard buildings.
Zhang Shanggui, head of Wenxian County Transportation Bureau; Chen Jin, Party secretary of Shangde Township; Chen Wenping, head of Shangde Township; and Huang Shunfu, Wenxian County official in charge of post-disaster reconstruction were suspended, China News Service reported today.
Another four officials received warnings and demotions.
However, Longnan City government, which oversees Wenxian County and Shangde Town, denied that some 10 million yuan (US$1.52 million) relief fund was used for image projects, including a neon-lit street. It said its balance sheet showed the 5-million-yuan street project used profits from selling shares of a local gold mine.
But its statement failed to convince residents who still lived in temporary shelters and cracked newly built houses two and half years after the quake destroyed their homes.