China stresses grassroots for Party Congress

Updated: 2006-11-12 16:49

BEIJING - At least a third of delegates to China's 17th Party Congress next year should come from the country's grassroots, with more representation from workers and farmers, the Xinhua news agency said on Sunday.

Thirty-eight units across China would "elect" a total of 2,220 delegates by June next year, in preparation for the 2007 congress.

"Leaders and cadres generally should not constitute over 70 percent of the total number of delegates, while those from the grass-roots level should not be less than 30 percent," Xinhua quoted an official from the Communist Party's central committee as saying.

There should also be more representation from women and ethnic groups, it said.

Nearly 100 more delegates would take part in next year's meeting, compared to the 16th Party Congress in late 2002 in which Hu was appointed chief of the Communist Party.

The rise in the number of delegates comes as the ranks of the Party have expanded to more than 70 million members, compared to around 64 million in late 2002, Xinhua said.

The Party has pledged to implement democratic elections and decision-making while also insisting that they maintain one-party lead of the country.

Delegates to next year's congress will be carefully vetted and trained by the government.

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