Inside Story of the Demoted Minister of Railway
The sudden dismissal of China』s Minister of Railway,
Liu Zhijun, gets wide attention both home and abroad.
Official media only said that it was due to Liu』s
"severe violation of discipline" without any details,
stirring up all sorts of speculation.
Liu Zhijun was removed from office at the peak of
the New Year season transportation.
It is undoubtedly explosive news.
It also happened very quickly, because 20 minutes ago
the TV news was about him inspecting railroad work.
As to the reasons for his dismissal, Pu fei, staff of
China Tianwang Human Rights Service gave three
possibilities from internal discussion and other sources.
Pu Fei: First, it could be political struggle. Secondly,
people suspect that the large scale construction of
high speed railway must involve large-scale corruption,
as the supervision is null in China. Thirdly,
it could be related to the bribery cases of the suppliers
in high speed railway construction.
Started as a railway maintenance worker at 19,
Liu Zhijun, now 58, became Minister of Railway
in 2003. He is believed to be promoted all the way
by Jiang Zemin, the CCP』s ex-General Secretary.
During Jiang』s tenure,
Liu was alleged to accompany him in his inspection.
In Sept. 2002, before CCP』s 16th congress meetings,
Liu was appointed as Party Chief and Deputy Minister
in Ministry of Railway. The appointment was made
by Jiang Zemin before his retirement.
Overseas Chinese media said it was a reward
for Liu』s service to him in all those years.
Pu Fei: Liu Zhijun is over doing it to show his
admiration of Jiang Zemin. He even followed Jiang
closely when the latter left office. Politically,
it could be a sign to irritate the current leader.
Western media also catch up the news of Liu』s fall.
French media said, Liu made public appearance on
Feb. 11. But the next day, the official website of
Ministry of Railway removed materials of Liu
and other leaders. The severity of the matter means
it cannot be postponed,
so the top Party leaders made the final decision.
The Guardian cited South China Morning Post in HK,
saying the investigation on Liu could be extended
to other officials, because the Ministry of Railway
has removed materials of other leaders.
There might be other changes in management positions.
Pu Fei: Mr. Ran Yunfei once said, China is a society
of “mutual harm.” No one has any sense of security.
Liu Zhijun could be minister of the world』s No. 1
state-owned enterprise, the Ministry of Railway.
An hour later, however, he could end up in prison,
without any sign of warning.
Li Zhijun』s case of corruption was exposed
right before the CCP』s 18th Congress.
It is also a time when the Tunisians and Egyptians
succeeded in their anti-government protests.
The democratic heat spreads the world.
Some analysts said that CCP threw Liu Zhijun out
at such a time just to avert people』s attention
from the “Jasmine Revolution.”
Pu Fei said, in the past when former Beijing Mayor
Chen Xitong was arrested, people were delighted.
Now Liu Zhijun』s detention makes people ponder.
Pu Fei: Arresting them is only a remedy afterwards.
Why isn』t any supervision beforehand?
There are constructions of highways and railways
everywhere in the world.
How come their ministers are all right?
Our minister is corrupt.
That prompts people to think back.
Pu Fei said, many people mentioned that CCP has to
first stop the persecution of political dissidents and
Falun Gong people,
then set up the supervision system and election system.
Arresting Li Zhijun alone won』t make any difference
of the current situation.