New statistics chief vows to act against corruption

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 01 February, 2007, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 01 February, 2007, 12:00am

China's new statistics chief, Xie Fuzhan, has warned his subordinates to learn from the fall of his disgraced predecessor, Qiu Xiaohua, and pledged to revamp the National Bureau of Statistics' system of checks and balances.

Mr Xie told a meeting of statisticians that the downfall of Mr Qiu, who was sacked in October for taking bribes and having more than one wife, should serve as a lesson for all statistics officials. He asked them to study the case and come up with plans to strengthen the organisation's internal self-discipline and anti-corruption work.

'The case of Qiu Xiaohua has taught us all a grim lesson. We must learn from this experience and strengthen our moral defence against corruption,' mainland media quoted Mr Xie as saying.

Zhang Guorong , in charge of the bureau's disciplinary work, said the key to preventing similar corruption from occurring again was to strengthen the internal mechanism of checks and balances.

She said Mr Qiu had been taking bribes since 1993, but his crimes were not discovered until last year. Ms Zhang said this highlighted the weakness of the bureau's supervision mechanism.

'We must strengthen our internal supervision work - particularly on leaders. Department heads must bear greater responsibility and exercise self-discipline,' Ms Zhang said.

She said the bureau would also promote better financial control and auditing work. 'We need to establish an effective mechanism to regulate our spending,' she said.

Mr Qiu, a protege of former premier Zhu Rongji, was one of the most senior cadres punished in the mainland's recent anti-graft campaign, which also claimed Shanghai party chief Chen Liangyu , Beijing vice-mayor Liu Zhihua, and Qingdao party chief Du Shicheng .

In addition to his sacking, Mr Qiu was expelled from the Communist Party and dismissed from all administrative posts.