Anhui officials pledge to spurn bribes in full-page newspaper ad
In a rare and self-proclaimed “innovative” move, 34 top-ranking Communist Party officials in Suzhou city, in China’s central Anhui province, pledged on Thursday in a full-page newspaper advertisement to steer clear of corruption by rejecting all kinds of bribes in the future.
The news, after being picked up by national media including the People’s Daily’s official Weibo, drew thousands of online comments, mostly sarcastic responses from readers saying the real answer to corruption in China was political reform, not a newspaper announcement.
The city’s Communist Party chief, mayor and 32 other top-ranking officials promised in the statement published in Foxiao Paper, a party mouthpiece, that they would refrain from accepting cash, coupons and gifts from their underlings, organisations they regulate and citizens they serve.
“What's there to boast about? Isn’t this part of the civil servants' code of conduct?” a microblogger commented.
“It’s ironic that our leaders just promised in a party paper that they would not commit crimes,” wrote Yuan Yulai, a Beijing-based lawyer.
A spokesperson working for the city’s information office told the local Xin’an Evening News that officials had made the “public pledge” to invite supervision from the city’s residents.
Party discipline officials in the city also offered a hotline for Suzhou citizens to call and report corruption. Yet calls to the line made by the South China Morning Post on Friday afternoon went unanswered.