China's top procurator has vowed to step up the fight against power-for-money crimes among government officials next year.
Crimes by officials in areas like finance, real estate, construction project bidding, land-use rights acquisition and materials purchasing will be the focus of the 2004 anti-corruption campaign, said Jia Chunwang, procurator-general of the Supreme People's Procuratorate.
He made the remarks on Monday at a nationwide meeting of procurators from provincial-level people's procuratorates.
Jia called on the country to continue its crackdown on crimes committed by officials, as they remain significant.
"Currently, the breeding ground for corruption still exists in the country, and the official crime rate is still high. This requires procuratorial departments to crack down on crimes by officials and place this at the top of their work agenda,'' Jia said.
In the first 11 months of this year, about 38,000 indictments for crimes committed by officials were filed by procuratorial organs.
Of the total, a little more than half were serious embezzlement or bribery cases. That's up nearly 5 per cent from the same period last year.
About 2,600 officials at the county government level or above were convicted and sentenced during this period.
Jia stressed that important investigation efforts will continue on corruption cases committed by high-profile officials at this level of government.
Moreover, state assets embezzlement cases, power abuse cases and cases causing huge losses of life and State property will be the prosecutors' key targets, said Jia.
While stepping up efforts to investigate significant cases, Jia also called on procuratorates at all levels to pay attention to grass-roots corruption cases, "because they are closely related to the people's fundamental interests.''
Jia also pointed out the problem of alleged injustices committed in law enforcement and in the local judiciary system, which saw strong complaints from the public.
"One of our key tasks will be to investigate law enforcement officials or judicial personnel who are alleged to have abused their power or bent the justice system for bribes,'' he said.
Politburo meeting vows to fight corruption
Hu Jintao, general secretary of the Communist Party of China, presided over a meeting of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee Tuesday to discuss the top issues of building the Party's style and fighting corruption.
The participants exchanged views on the formulation of the (Experimental) Provisions on the Internal Supervision of the Communist Party of China, and the draft of the Provisions on Disciplinary Punishments of the Communist Party of China.
They agreed that negative phenomena and corruption as well as the conditions that have bred these phenomena are yet to be eliminated, although new and remarkable achievements have been made in anti-corruption efforts to improve the Party's style and clean up the government since the convening of the 16th CPC Congress in 2002.
The meeting called for carrying out the anti-corruption drive in a substantial manner, stressing that it is of great importance for ensuring the smooth accomplishment of all the tasks of the Party and the state.
Meanwhile the CPC Central Committee for Discipline Inspection will hold its third plenary session in January 2004, according to a resolution made at the meeting.
New system to curb corruption
The Supreme People's Procuratorate has initiated a new system whereby regular citizens are hired to work as supervisors to oversee workplace offences directly handled by procuratorial organs.
These offences can include corruption, bribery, breaches of citizens' democratic rights and misconduct while in office.
The supervisors can express their views on what they see as improper or illegal actions from procuratorial staff and can participate in the investigation.
Since it was launched in September, 10 provinces have set up the people's supervisor mechanism and 4,675 citizens have been recommended to the first group of supervisors.
By December 15, the mechanism had been applied to 209 cases, 16 of which resulted in a different resolution based on their recommendations.
(China Daily December 24, 2003)