Communist Party of China Proposes Major Changes to China’s Constitution
By admin March 2, 2018

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On February 25th, 2018, the Communist Party of China released a proposal that aims to revise China’s constitution. The proposal contains twenty-one articles, among which articles fourteen, five and twenty are the most important.

First, article fourteen proposes to ease the restriction, which rules that the Chairman and Vice-Chairmen of People’s Republic of China shall serve no more than two consecutive terms, from constitution article seventy-nine, paragraph three. If this proposal is enacted, the leader of the People’s Republic of China could have life tenure. The restriction of tenure terms were added in China’s 1982 constitution, and seen as a political legacy left by Chairman Deng Xiaoping, the former leader of the People’s Republic of China who promoted China’s economic reforms – this economic reform ended planned economy in China and helped China experienced a steady economic growth from the 1980s to today.

This part of proposal delivered a message that President Xi Jinping is likely to stay on power for more than two terms. This rumor was circulated in China after the 19th CPC National Congress, which has been held every five years and used by CPC to introduce the successor of the presidency. However, public could not identify a potential successor in the 19th CPC National Congress. If President Xi Jinping does seek for power after 2022, he will break up a major political rule set by Chairman Deng Xiaoping.

Second, article number five proposed to add one sentence in article one, paragraph two, reinforcing the notion that the Communist Party of China is the ruling party of the People’s Republic of China.

Third, article number twenty-one proposed to add control commissions to the organ-of-state chapter. Control commissions were established by President Xi Jinping, the current leader of the People’s Republic of China. One of the priorities of this organ is to fight against corruption. China’s government launched an anti-corruption movement after the 18th CPC National Congress. According to public information, 154 officials were penalized or prosecuted. As control commissions become a national organ, anti-corruption movements and high-pressure political environment are both likely to continue.

Conclusively, the current proposal tries to ease the restriction of terms in China’s constitution that prevent dictatorship, reinforce the ruling party’s position of the Communist Party of China and clearly signal that the anti-corruption movement is likely to continue.

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