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Judge: `bad apples' don't spoil court
( 2004-01-12 22:32) (China Daily)

Apologizing to the local municipal congress, the president of the Wuhan Intermediate People's Court vowed Sunday to continue fighting legislative corruption.

Zhou Wenxuan told 512 delegates to the 11th Wuhan Municipal People's Congress that a few bad judges had cast a negative light on the whole judicial system.

"A total of 13 judges in my court made deals between power and money... they were placed on file for investigation and prosecution early last year," he said.

Among the corrupt judges are two vice-presidents and three deputy presiding judges, said Zhou, who took up his post in January last year.

Former executive vice-president of the court, Ke Changxin, was detained by police in June, suspected of taking bribes worth more than 500,000 yuan (US$60,400).

"I feel very upset when reporting the serious problems among our judges," Zhou told congress delegates. "Although few among the judges, they have seriously, and negatively influenced the image of judges."

Zhou vowed to strengthen court reform and supervise judges more strictly.

"Judges are prohibited from meeting litigants and their clients privately. Those who do so will be temporarily relieved from posts and asked to make self-criticisms,'' he said.

Furthermore, those judges whose cases surpass the deadline for trials will lose their qualifications as judicial officers, said Zhou.

He also promised to further solicit complaints and advice from congress deputies and members of the local people's political consultative conference.

A hot line has also been established to receive complaints from local residents.

Congressmen believe Zhou's act is a sign that the court attaches great importance to supervision from the local people's congress.

Chongqing congress

Besides Wuhan, many other municipalities around the country such as Chongqing and Shenyang were holding their annual sessions of local people's congress over the weekend, ahead of the Second Session of the 10th National People's Congress expected to be held in March.

At the annual session of the Chongqing Municipal People's Congress in Southwest China, which closed Sunday, issues closely related to residents' daily lives topped the motions.

Deputy Luo Ronghong proposed increasing number of public toilets in downtown areas to meet the needs of residents.

Another deputy Lu Lei shared Luo's views and further advised setting up public toilets with parking spaces for the 18,000 taxi drivers in Chongqing municipality.

Deputy Cui Baohua urged the government to adopt effective measures to ensure food safety.

District session

In Beijing, the eight districts in urban area kicked off their congress session on Saturday.

At the Haidian District People's Court, five delegates are university students.

Haidian is well-known for its universities and high-tech enterprises,

Luo Bin, a student with the Tsinghua University is involved in the presidium of the session, the first time a student is a member of presidium in the history of the Haidian District People's Congress, sources said.

"It is not only my personal issue (to be a presidium member), it reflects the fact that the voice of students is paid enough attention now by the district people's congress,'' Luo said in an interview with the Beijing News newspaper.

Nearly 200,000 students study at universities in the Haidian District in North Beijing.

For Chaoyang District -- an area previously in the outskirts but now a hub for multinational companies' headquarters, embassies and central business district -- the focus is on finding jobs for laid-off workers. Acting district head Chen Gang said finding work for middle-aged laid off workers should be the focus this year.

At lease 20,000 posts will be offered to unemployed people.

Meanwhile, residents living in rural areas will have an upgraded medical assistance system, according to Chen.

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