The Communist Party of China just issued new regulations on the performance of officials, vowing that incompetence will be punished by demotion or dismissal.
According to Shanghai Daily, the new rules will apply to officials who do not adhere to Party rules, engage in corrupt activities, exhibit undesirable work styles or are found to be irresponsible or incompetent.
The regulations, finalized at a meeting presided over by none other than Xi Jinping himself, would appear to be a tacit admission that there has been little, barring the occasional media storm, to stop officials doing a half-hearted job or abusing their power.
A revised regulation on discipline inspection, which has been used extensively as a tool since Xi came to power to remove corrupt officials and political rivals, was also adopted at the meeting.
“Discipline inspection, which focuses on detecting undesirable work styles and corruption among Party members, has become a major tool in strictly governing the Party,” read a statement issued after the meeting.
The most recent high-profile victim of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection was none other than China’s former security chief Zhou Yongkang, the most senior party member to face graft charges in the history of CPC rule.
While hundreds of officials have been investigated and prosecuted over the past few years, it is most certainly political opponents who are bearing the brunt of the recent anti-corruption campaign. Zhou himself was of course a key ally of the now disgraced Bo Xilai, another political heavyweight who those at the top wanted out.
By Dominic Jackson