Improve the Justice and Legal System and Help Promote Sound and Rapid Economic and Social Development (Extract)

From: English Edition of Qiushi Journal Updated: 2011-09-20 14:20
text size: T | T
Share:

 For the present and some time to come, China’s procuratorial, judicial and public security organs at all levels need to work especially hard on three important areas: resolving social tensions, making innovations in the management of society and ensuring clean and just law enforcement, closely focusing on source, fundamental and basic issues that affect social harmony and stability. We need to make general improvement in all areas of procuratorial, judicial and public security work, ensure good national security and social harmony and stability, and improve the justice and legal system to promote sound and rapid economic and social development.

 I. We need to make a thoroughgoing effort to resolve social tensions and form an environment in which people express their demands in an orderly fashion in accordance with the law, and issues are promptly and effectively resolved.

 Behind most current letters and visits of citizens expressing dissatisfaction and mass disturbances in China are issues among the people of different groups in society concerning conflicts of interest that have arisen in the course of reform and development. This tells us that we must continue to deepen reform, promote scientific development and strengthen education and publicity efforts to resolve practical problems. On the basis of efforts in recent years, procuratorial, judicial and public security organs at all levels should work together more closely to resolve long-standing issues, take effective measures to prevent the emergence of new issues and do more to develop mechanisms to continuously consolidate and develop an excellent social environment of harmony and stability.

 In resolving social tensions, we must first of all address their sources. We need to always put people first, work for overall balanced and sustainable development, ensure that the people share in the fruits of development, direct more of the results of development towards ensuring the well-being and improving the lives of the people, never infringe on the legitimate rights and interests of the people and prevent or reduce social tensions by addressing the sources. We cannot make policy decisions or decide on projects simply on the basis of economic benefits or desirability; we must also assess the possible threat to social stability and feasibility. We should carry out projects that benefit the public and the long-term interests of the people, but we cannot make rash decisions and act without good reason. Second, we need to clear the docket. Procuratorial, judicial and public security organs at all levels should decide on and take different measures for different cases involving the law and people’s complaint letters and pending cases. The many issues that have not yet been reflected in complaints to government organs should also be resolved as soon as possible to stop them from building up and intensifying. Third, we need to improve mechanisms. We need to improve the mechanisms directed by the Party and government for safeguarding the rights and interests of the people, launch a major campaign to investigate social issues and improve the three-part mediation system of mediation through neighborhood committees, mediation through administrative organs and mediation through judicial organs. We must improve the overall level of personnel mediating labor disputes, medical disputes, environmental protection issues and food and medicine safety issues and mobilize the forces of labor unions, the Communist Youth League and the All-China Women’s Federation, and form a mechanism to promptly and effectively resolve social tensions that relies on lower-level Party and government organizations, industry regulatory organizations and self-governed mass organizations so that there is a mediation organization wherever people live and there is mediation work wherever a dispute arises. Procuratorial, judicial and public security organs at all levels must instill the idea among their personnel that mediation is also their responsibility and make it a policy to try mediation first in resolving cases before turning to the legal system. Fourth, we need to improve organizations at the basic level. The key to resolving social tensions is at the lowest level. Township, town and community officials should coordinate all forces under the leadership of the deputy secretaries of the concerned Party (working) committee to form a large platform for overall management of social issues and work to resolve minor issues at the community level and major issues at the township or town level so that they do not reach higher levels.

 Procuratorial, judicial and public security organs at all levels should view resolution of issues as a dynamic way of enforcing the law for the benefit of the public and an important tool for safeguarding social harmony and stability. They should arrange for procuratorial, judicial and public security officials and other personnel to frequently meet with the people to understand their demands in order to uncover, report on and resolve issues as they emerge. They need to set up an effective early warning system and system for handling emergencies so that issues and problems can be resolved when and where they first emerge.

 July 1, 2010, more than 240 personnel from the Supreme People’s Procuratorate face the national flag in a mass oath-taking ceremony. They swear the following: As a procurator of the People’s Republic of China, I swear I will be loyal to my country, to the people and to the Constitution and the laws, faithfully fulfill my legal oversight duty, abide by code of conduct for procurators, ensure fairness and justice and safeguard the uniformity of law. / Supplied by Xinhua and photo by Xinhua reporter Xu Boli

 II. We need to make innovations in the management of society to make the social management system better suited to the socialist market economic system.

 Making innovations in the management of society is a task for Party committees and government at all levels as well as relevant government departments. Procuratorial, judicial and public security organs at all levels need to work closely with relevant government departments under the leadership of Party committees and the government to focus on resolving problems in three areas. First, they need to resolve the issue of how to serve and manage the floating population. How to serve and manage the local floating population should be incorporated into the local plan for economic and social development. In particular, plans should include both an appropriate scale of urbanization and reform of the system of residence permits, and address issues affecting the floating population such as employment, housing, medical care and schooling for their children. Local authorities should experiment with a new model for serving and managing the floating population by managing them through residence permits, localities of their housing and their units of employment and improving the way they serve and manage the local floating population. Second, they must resolve the issue of how to help, provide education for and manage people with special needs. They should implement the Opinions on Improving the Work of Settling, Helping and Providing Education for Prisoners Released from Reeducation through Labor Camps or Prison soon to be issued by the General Office of the CPC Central Committee and the General Office of the State Council to help released prisoners readjust to life in society. We need to resolve the problem of dropout, unemployed youth in society by thoroughly investigating the issue and doing everything possible to get them an education or occupational training. Third, they must resolve the issue of improving overall public security in areas where public security is poor. Measures to improve public security in such areas should be incorporated in local plans for economic and social development, focusing on problem villages within cities and areas where urban and rural areas meet; efforts should be made to improve infrastructure, living conditions and community organizations in those areas and expand public services to include those areas to make them economically developed areas with good environmental conditions where the people live in safety and harmony.

 Personnel in procuratorial, judicial and public security organs at all levels must change their way of thinking about management and services by integrating management into services. They should fully implement the strategy of policing by community in urban and rural areas, develop a new platform for managing society and providing services, and fully utilize modern information technology to constantly make the management of society more efficient. Procuratorial, judicial and public security organs at all levels should work with concerned government departments to put forward suggestions and make plans for improving the management of society. Party committees and government at all levels should not only put forward requirements in general, but, more importantly, they should work out plans, define targets, adopt detailed measures and strive to make breakthroughs.

 III. We must ensure that law enforcement is clean and honest and improve the public image of law enforcement for trustworthiness when it is more open and transparent with greater use of IT to keep the public informed.

 Ensuring that law enforcement is clean and honest and safeguarding fairness and justice in society constitute the lifeline of the work of the legal and judicial system as well as the basis for the procuratorial, judicial and public security organs to carry out their prime political tasks. People are more and more demanding fairness and justice in society as the country continues to make progress in developing socialist democracy and rule by law. In particular, as the law enforcement activities of procuratorial, judicial and public security organs have become more open and transparent and the public is better informed with greater use of IT, their activities have been receiving more and more attention from all sectors of society and the media. As a result, unfair and illegitimate law enforcement can easily arouse discontent among the people. There has been marked improvement in the infrastructure and operating conditions of procuratorial, judicial and public security organs in recent years, thanks in part to the strong support of Party committees and government at all levels. While working to improve the “hardware” of procuratorial, judicial and public security organs we must devote even more effort to improving the “software” by addressing the major problems affecting efforts to ensure clean and honest law enforcement to make a qualitative improvement in the abilities, quality and trustworthiness in the eyes of the public of procuratorial, judicial and public security organs.

 In order to ensure clean and just law enforcement we must make breakthroughs in the key links that affect the public’s trust in law enforcement. First, we need to carry out large scale training for the personnel of procuratorial, judicial and public security organs to further improve our ability to enforce the law. Successful efforts at the community level and a solid foundation are essential to ensuring success in law enforcement work. While continuing training on a rotating basis for the principal officials of all procuratorial, judicial and public security organs of counties and cities, and districts, beginning in 2010 all leading officials of basic level sections, police stations, courts and offices will be sent to provincial and municipal procuratorial, judicial and public security organs on a rotating basis for training, and this practice will be made a long-term institution. We must continue to devote a great deal of effort to on-the-job training to improve the overall competence of front-line personnel in the justice and law-enforcement system. Second, we must address the problems in law enforcement that arouse the greatest dissatisfaction among the people by making standards for law enforcement more detailed and strengthening the management of law enforcement. We must ensure that law enforcement is clean and honest by making standards more detailed and law enforcement procedures stricter. For the several types of cases that often lead to deviations from proper law enforcement procedures and that arouse strong dissatisfaction among the people, we need to set up a guidance system and standardize the scope of discretion. We need to make standards for law enforcement, on-duty actions, and handling emergency situations more detailed so that officials and other personnel of procuratorial, judicial and public security organs know what to say, what to do and how to say it and how to do it in all circumstances and enforce the law strictly, fairly and honestly as well as in a reasonable and civilized manner in accordance with set standards. Third, we need to continue to strengthen supervision of law enforcement by making it more open and making greater use of information technology to keep the public informed. We need to instill in personnel the idea of ensuring justice through openness and ensuring freedom from corruption through transparency, and let “the sun shine on law enforcement.” The basis, procedures, processes and results for law enforcement activities should be made public unless otherwise prohibited by the law in order to be subject to the supervision of the public. We need to be open and transparent in dealing with mass disturbances and release authoritative information promptly so we can maintain the initiative. Computer technology should be used to handle basically all cases in the eastern and central regions in 2010, and in the provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities in the western region to set up a new mechanism for enforcing the law and handling cases should be accelerated so that all information related to law enforcement is available online, the process of law enforcement is managed online, law enforcement activities can be followed online and the quality of law enforcement can be monitored online. In addition, the sites for interrogation, detention, court trials and surveillance should all be videotaped. Fourth, we need to improve CPC organizations in procuratorial, judicial and public security organs and continue to make progress in ensuring their personnel always retain their advanced nature. Procuratorial, judicial and public security organs at all levels must follow the guidelines set out at the Fourth Plenary Session of the 17th CPC Central Committee and improve the overall quality of personnel through Party improvement, improve the overall quality of personnel through improvement of the leadership and give full play to the important role of CPC organizations in procuratorial, judicial and public security organs and the pioneering and exemplary role of officials and other personnel who are Party members. Procuratorial, judicial and public security organs at all levels need to step up education about the theoretical system of socialism with Chinese characteristics, the beliefs and concepts of socialist rule of law, professional ethnics, proper conduct and clean government administration. They should ensure that all personnel in procuratorial, judicial and public security organs always put three things above all else, the cause of the Party, the interests of the people and the Constitution and law, and always keep the Party, the Chinese people, the law and justice at heart. In addition, we need to improve implementation of the responsibility system for instituting a proper Party work style and clean government, rigorously implement all regulations and bans related to ensuring clean government administration, carefully investigate and prosecute acts in violation of the code of conduct and the law, and resolutely work to eliminate all corrupt elements in and do more to clean up the staffs of procuratorial, judicial and public security organs.

 We need to concentrate on three areas: how to resolve conflicts in society, how to make innovations in the management of society and how to ensure clean and honest law enforcement, which are the major issues facing procuratorial, judicial and public security organs. Even more importantly, they are the major issues affecting overall progress of the cause of the Party and the state. All levels of Party organizations and the government will need to mobilize all the forces at their disposal to resolve these issues. First of all taking into consideration the overall situation in reform, development and stability, Party committees and government at all levels need to carry out research to improve their understanding of the laws governing economic and social development, on how to better promote balanced economic and social development and on how to balance their top priorities and their most important responsibilities against the background of the development of a socialist market economy and the opening up of the country in all respects. In particular, they need to improve their organization and leadership, scientifically plan projects on a case-by-case basis, improve systems and mechanisms and strengthen support and guarantees on the basis of lessons learned from experience to address source, fundamental and basic issues affecting social harmony and stability. In addition, CPC committees and government at all levels must show more concern and care for the officials and other personnel of procuratorial, judicial and public security organs by doing everything possible to help them resolve practical problems and difficulties in their work and daily lives, and assemble a good corps of procuratorial, judicial and public security personnel and manage and use them well in order to maintain social stability in the period of the important strategic opportunities for the country and ensure long-term peace and stability in socialist China.

(From Qiushi in Chinese edition, No. 4, 2010)


Note: Author: Member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee and Secretary of the Commission for Politics and Law of the CPC Central Committee

This is a transcript of a talk the author gave in a national teleconference televised December 18, 2009, on the work of procuratorial, judicial and public security organs, which was abridged when issued.

Qiushi Journal | English Edition of Qiushi Jounrnal | Contact us | Subscription Copyright by Qiushi Journal, All rights reserved