Premier urges public supervision on government
Updated: 2008-03-05 19:40
BEIJING -- Premier Wen Jiabao on Wednesday urged government officials to create conditions to enable the people to oversee the government more effectively, in a sign of China's growing determination to develop democracy.
Wen made the request at the ongoing annual full session of the 11th National People's Congress (NPC), the top legislature, one year after he ordered government departments and officials to "accept the oversight of the news media and the general public" at the previous NPC full session.
China will strive to make government affairs more open by enhancing information release system and improving administrative systems, and will increase the transparency of government functions, Wen told lawmakers from across the country.
Observers said Wen's remarks showed that the Chinese government is determined to exercise power in the sunshine with more participation from the general public.
Song Gongde, an associate researcher from the National School of Administration, said: "With more favorable condition, the public supervision will merge with existing forms of supervision and improve the effectiveness of supervision. The government has made up its mind to listen more from people."
Outside the Great Hall of the People, Beijing residents were informed that they would be exempted from postage when they write letters to the Beijing municipal committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) and the municipal government to raise suggestions and complaints.
A Beijing Youth Daily report on Wednesday quoted a government official as saying that the postage exemption was meant to help people to voice their concerns and officials listen more to public members.
One need only to write "letter from masses" on the envelope and put it into postbox, and then his or her voices would be heard by officials.
Analysts said Wen's request on government officials was a result in carrying out guidelines in the report at the 17th CPC National Congress in October.
At the CPC national congress that chartered roadmap for the country's development in the coming years, the word "democracy" appeared 60 times in the report by President Hu Jintao, who said "we need ... to guarantee the people's rights to be informed, to participate, to be heard, and to oversee."