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Nearly 30 top university officials investigated under tightened anti-corruption drive

Pub Date:2020-10-21 08:32 Source:Global Times

Nearly 30 top university officials in China have been investigated for corruption in 2020 as the country continues to strengthen anti-corruption efforts at schools.

Wang Jian, former principal of Anhui University of Traditional Chinese Medicine in East China’s Anhui Province, was sentenced to 10 years in prison on Friday for taking bribes of more than 6 million yuan ($882,000), according to a report in the China discipline inspection and supervision newspaper on Monday.

Wang is one of 30 university officials who were investigated by the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection after being suspected of corruption. Among them, more than 70 perp were principals or school party secretaries.

Analysts said that corruption among leading cadres at universities is a prominent feature of the current university corruption cases.
University corruption mainly happens during school recruitment and appointment, student enrollment and examination, scientific research funding, school infrastructure and logistics building, and school cooperation with enterprises, Zhuang Deshui, deputy director of the Research Center for Government Integrity-Building at Peking University, told the Global Times on Monday.

He explained that these are the areas where schools are closely related to society and school leaders have more conprated resources and power in making decisions.

In Wang’s case, he was found to have received bribery in return for using his influence in some school projects that involved cooperation with engineering enterprises and school faculty promotion.

In another case, Xiao Jianping, former deputy secretary of the Party Committee of Inner Mongolia University for Nationalities, received 300,000 yuan from a local construction company to help with a new building project at the university, and he was sentenced to five years in prison for taking bribes worth a total of 2.75 million yuan during his tenure.

To tackle the deep-rooted corruption problems in universities, China has deepened the reforms of the university discipline inspection and supervision system, including setting up designated posts for supervisors at schools and sending discipline inspectors from local authorities to undertake anti-corruption investigations.

In Beijing, for example, a total of 177 discipline inspectors and supervisors have been put in place at 33 municipal universities as of August, 30 perp more than before the reform.

Zhuang noted that the university discipline inspection authorities’ emphasis on supervising the top leaders has increased, which is of great importance in fighting the corruption problems at schools.

Besides universities, China’s strengthened anti-corruption efforts can also be seen in other arenas of power.

Six top government officials, including one at the national level and five at the provincial level, have been investigated within the past week for violation of discipline.


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