采访/易如 编辑/张天宇 后制/李智远
Nearly 600 Hunan Lawmakers Disqualified
Recently, serious election fraud in Hunan Province
was exposed involving nearly 600 candidates who were
accused of taking more than 100 million yuan
(US$16.5 million) in bribes during the election.
“The fraud, involving such a huge number of lawmakers
and a large amount of money is serious in nature, has a vile
impact, and has triggered strong public condemnation,”
a statement said.
Hunan Standing Committee of the National People’s
Congress (NPC) made an announcement on Dec. 27 and 28,
China’s state-owned media reported.
It said that during the meeting of Hengyang’s first session
of the 14th NPC, 56 candidates who won elections
via bribery were disqualified.
Meanwhile, Hengyang’s 512 NPC representatives
who accepted bribes were removed.
In addition, Tong Mingqian, Deputy Chairman of Hunan
Provincial Political Consultative Conference, who was
directly responsible for the election was dismissed
and placed under investigation for alleged breach of duty.
An official statement given during the election said
56 lawmakers elected to the provincial legislature offered
bribes to 518 Hengyang NPC representatives
and 68 other staff members.
The total amount of bribes offered amounted
to 110 million yuan (US$18 million).
Sources say that 20 out of 56 lawmakers
who were involved in fraud came from governmental organs
and state-owned enterprises.
32 came from the business world.
Wang Yukai, Professor at China National School
of Administration told media that the Hengyang fraud case
is not an isolated phenomenon.
It reflects that the corruption has penetrated
into every corner of China.
Yang Xuesen, member of Beijing lawyers society:
“There may be more such cases
that haven’t been checked out.
There is certainly a loophole.
It is impossible to prevent it from the root.
The environment facilitates its presence, it is a ripe
breeding grounds for the loophole.”
Yao Lifan, former Hubei NPC representative says
that during the election, it is a common practice
to offer bribes.
The Hunan case is just the tip of the iceberg.
Yao Lifa: “I have been participating in elections,
and have been elected.
From the control of the nominees to the vote,
I have behind-the-scenes insight.
Regarding bribery, I certainly didn’t offer bribes,
but other people have offered me bribes.
Regarding the fraud in the recent election,
it is common practice in China.”
Yao says it is impossible that the regime isn’t aware
of the serious election fraud.
Such cases have been investigated for many years.
If the media didn’t report on the Hunan fraud and the society
didn’t question it, the regime would continue to cover it up.
The Beijing News reported that in early 2013, private
entrepreneur Huang Yubiao lost in the Shaoyang City,
Later, he posted about election fraud online taking himself
as an example.
It drew quite a bit of public attention.
Huang Yubiao says that before he participated in the election,
local leaders implied that he offer them money.
He was angry and felt hopeless.
After he sent 320,000 yuan ($53,000) to 300 Shaoyang NPC
representatives, he suddenly grew tired of bribery,
and no longer offered bribes.
In the end, he lost 20 votes and was defeated.
Huang wasn’t very happy with the rule of bribery,
thus he exposed Shaoyang’s election fraud online.
Under the pressure of media and public opinion,
Hunan regime has to carry out an investigation.
Later the fraud was exposed.
Yao Lifa revealed that the NPC representatives’ positions
were bought rather than won via the vote of the people.
He says that it is common practice that the elected
NPC representatives were local thugs.
Yao: “The current problem is not to actually use the ballot.
People say that the election is just a showcase, a formality.
The candidates are puppets serving for a specific group.
They cannot express their own opinion.
One must follow someone’s will to vote,
and one must keep silent.”
Netizens ridiculed the NPC representatives frequent
They wonder how people could expect the representatives
to speak out for them when they trade money for power.
Interview/YiRu Edit/Zhang Tianyu Post-Production/Li Zhiyuan