Warning on political corruption

China | Nov 8, 2017
China must step up vigilance against plots to grab power, as political corruption is the worst form of corruption, Wang Qishan, the country's still influential former top graft-buster, wrote yesterday.

Wang, a key ally of President Xi Jinping, stepped down in a leadership reshuffle last month at the end of the five-yearly Communist Party Congress, but could assume a new role, say sources with ties to the leadership, though an announcement might not come for a few more weeks.

As the feared head of the party's anti-corruption watchdog for the past five years, Wang has spearheaded Xi's battle on graft, overseeing the jailing of dozens of former top officials, including the domestic security chief, Zhou Yongkang.

China has rebuffed criticism that the corruption campaign is as much about settling political scores as about stamping out genuine criminal acts.

Writing in the party's official People's Daily, Wang said the fight against corruption went beyond battling the pilfering of assets or hedonism and was a political battle.

"Political corruption is the biggest corruption," Wang wrote in comments drawn from a collection of essays released after the congress, but not previously published in full by state media.

Aspects of political corruption include the formation of special interest groups to try and seize power, and the organization of activities outside party parameters, Wang wrote.

Wang explicitly linked some of the most notorious cases to political crimes, citing Zhou as well as former party bosses of the southwestern city of Chongqing, Bo Xilai and Sun Zhengcai.


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