02/14/2013, 00.00
CHINA

Party denounces St. Valentine’s Day and decline of corrupt leaders

Bo Xilai, the former chief of Chongqing, Liu Zhijun, a former railway minister, Chen Liangyu, former party secretary of Shanghai cited as an example of people dragged into corruption from love affairs celebrated with St Valentine’s Day. Bloggers suggest rather than abolish the holiday it would be better to implement political reforms.

Beijing (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The People's Daily, the official organ of the Chinese Communist Party, has accused the feast of St. Valentine's Day of being behind corrupt and dissolute behaviours.

The feast of St. Valentine and the exchange of flowers, greeting cards, invitations has spread to China becoming a big business. Its popularity comes from the fact that traditional Chinese culture is usually very sober regarding expressions on love.

But according to an editorial published yesterday, Valentine's Day has now become a hotbed of decadent ideology and indulgent lifestyles, which have led some party cadres to dissipate their fortunes on lovers.

The article cites Bo Xilai, the former party secretary of Chongqing, Liu Zhijun, the former railways minister, Chen Liangyu, former party secretary of Shanghai. All of them, according to the author, are guilty of having had illicit love affairs with diverse women.

The blame for all this is the romantic message behind this feast of Western origin, where lovers are offered flowers, chocolates, greeting cards, which have led some executives to give in to corruption, abandon the communist creed and betray the cause.

The article concludes by warning the party members to keep a minimum of social morality by promoting the credibility and solidarity of the Chinese Communist Party.

To be fair, it must be said that the three men accused of corruption are also charged with other offences, as well as having had several love affairs: Bo Xilai is accused of abuse of power for having terrorized many cadres with his Maoist campaign and having aided and abetted his wife Gu Kailai in the murder of British businessman Niel Heywood, after decades of amassing a fortune through kickbacks and bribes during his rise to power. Liu Zhijun, was accused of having pocketed a 4% commission on railway development and investment for high-speed trains while he was minister. Chen Liangyu was sentenced to 18 years in prison in 2008 for the theft of billions of Yuan from public pension funds and abuse of power.

In the comments on the Internet, many bloggers note that the problem of corruption in China can not be resolved by cancelling Valentine's Day, but by implementing democratic reforms that allow the public to examine and report abuse and remove the culprits.

 

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