Opinion / Opinion Line

Calling back unfit officials will work better with precise criteria

(China Daily) Updated: 2015-04-17 07:50

Since last year, the Qianxinan Buyi and Miao autonomous prefecture in Guizhou province, Southwest China, has experimented in "calling back" officials that do not fit their current positions and offering training for them. By this February, 1,334 badly performing officials had been called back for further training. Comments:

Have all the 1,334 officials met the required standards after further training? The sample regulation of Qianxinan said those still failing to meet standards after training would be punished; did any of them receive punishment? Being unfit for their positions, no doubt some of them have failed in their duties before, did they get any penalty for that? If there are no penalties for officials failing to do their duty, there will be no pressure and the "call back" will become nothing but a show.

Xinhua Daily Telegraph, April 15

The ongoing anti-graft campaign has finally curbed the once rampant corruption among officials, but the problem of laziness remains, namely many sit idle each day and get paid with taxpayers' money without doing much. The practice of calling them back will hopefully encourage officials to work harder and do their jobs. However, more punitive measures are needed to drive them ahead and let those who remain idle pay for their laziness.

Legal Daily, via Sina micro blog, April 16

How is it decided which officials are unfit for their current positions? The Qianxinan local government has listed 12 standards, such as low efficiency or being unable to cooperate with other officials, but these standards are rather ambiguous and vague. A clear list with precise requirements is needed to make the calling back of officials fairer and more effective. If it is difficult to draw up such a list, why not allow the public to rate the officials and call back those that arouse public anger? They are supposed to serve the people and the people have the right to supervise them.

Beijing News, April 15

Sometimes an official fails to perform well in his current position because the higher authorities have put him or her in the wrong position. One example is the official in charge of the cattle industry in a county being made its education chief, which aroused widespread suspicion. The authorities need to do more after calling back the officials and arrange proper positions for them, so that such absurdities don't recur., April 16

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