Xi Jinping's anti-corruption campaign
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Chinese President Xi Jinping addresses a meeting of the politburo. Photo: Xinhua

Monitor your own families for corruption, China’s President Xi Jinping tells Communist Party leaders

China’s President Xi Jinping on Tuesday called on top Communist Party leaders to strictly manage the people close to them to prevent corruption – and to learn from the fall of their former colleagues Zhou Yongkang, Bo Xilai and others.

At the latest “democratic life meeting” of the 25-member politburo, top cadres said preventing the re-emergence of corrupt practices and upholding the party’s working style were still top priorities despite the successes of Xi’s crackdown on graft.

Xi asked fellow leaders to act as role models and to monitor and correct the behaviour of wayward members of their families or people working for them.

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He said without self-discipline, cadres were at risk of losing their ethics as they rose through the ranks.

He cited the cases of corrupt former high-level leaders including the former politburo members Zhou Yongkang and Bo Xilai, as well as Xu Caihou, Guo Boxiong and Ling Jihua.

“Comrades of the politburo must not feel any superiority in terms of power and positon,” Xi said.

The top leadership agreed to continue to educate party cadres above county level to reinforce the achievements of the anti-corruption drive and stressed that the campaign must continue.

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A “democratic life meeting” occurs when the party gathers members to reflect on their works and thoughts.

Participants are supposed to engage in open criticism and self-criticism.

Former Secretary General Hu Yaobang resigned after being criticised for being too “liberal” at such a meeting in 1987.

Since ascending to power, Xi has been using democratic life meetings to revive the Maoist tradition of “mass line” – or following the masses.

The first democratic life meeting of the politburo under his reign lasted four days in June 2013, themed on anti-corruption.