Friday, December 28, 2012

Chongqing Police: Before and After Wang Lijun's Downfall (2)

Wang Lijun sounded like such an arbitrary person. One question the Chinese reporter asked was really good. – Xujun

[in translation; continued from the previous post]

Southern Weekend: The Women’s Traffic & Patrol Special Detachment that was set up under Wang Lijun, will it be disbanded?

Chongqing Police Official: The Women’s Traffic & Patrol Special Service Detachment, the idea for the future is to maintain a normal institutional structure, there will be men and women, some women will be diverted to other departments. Let some women comrades join the Traffic & Patrol for nonviolent law enforcement, that's all right, but to set a special women's detachment, we do not quite agree. Especially, the design of a special uniform for them was a serious breach of regulation, something that had never happened in the history of China's public security. Since May 1st of this year, the Women's Traffic & Patrol Detachment has changed the uniform.

SW:  Any results after you made ​​the above adjustments?

Chongqing Police Official: Of course. The police platforms emptied manpower from the stations, and the basic work in public security was very weak, that was why the "3 • 19 gun-robbery" case was not solved for a long time. When solving the Zhou Kehua case, we did not make big noise. In less than four days Zhou Kehua was [found and] shot; police from stations played a direct role in this, and the masses provided important clues, which proves the importance of public security grass-roots work.

SW:  After a series of twists and turns, has the operational capacity of the Chongqing Public Security declined?

Chongqing Police Official: Objectively speaking, in recent years the Chongqing police's  operational capacity has declined somewhat, but it's hard to say how much. There are several reasons: First, the 2010 "institutional reform" made a mess for cadres. Institutional restructuring was originally required by the central government and the city, and the requirement was legitimate. However, Wang Lijun required all 308 division-level cadres and 2544 subdivision-level cadres be dismissed. All had to start over and try regain their positions through competition. Because he did not trust the local cadres, Wang Lijun also required 200 division-level cadres to be transferred in from outside, but we had only a total of over three hundred posts at that level. The complete overturn was to pave the way for outside cadres. At the time, the comrade who was heading the Political Department said that, according to regulations, administration personnel are appointed but not hired, thus they can't be simply dismissed from employment.   Wang Lijun thought about it and said, "Then lets call it 'dismiss from tasks'.". That was how this new term was coined by Wang Lijun. In this way, all human resources were disrupted, a large number of highly skilled cadres effectively became rookies, and needed time to get familiar with their new jobs. Secondly, 11,800 new police were recruited and placed in their posts directly, which caused the poor quality of case-solving in recent years. Now we have decided to start career training for the new police.

SW: I heard that you recently restored posts for some police officials at division and subdivision levels who had failed to regain employment through competition.   Does this mean you let some unqualified officials return to their posts?

Chongqing Police Official: According to the regulations, in institutional reform, the filling of posts should first consider existing qualified cadres, and then use any vacant posts for employment through competition.  But he overturned everything.

When giving examinations, he made ​​it clear one test that must be included was whether police had studied Bo Xilai's and his speeches.  After some struggle, we managed to also include some professional questions. Overall, the quality of cadres who passed the exams was not too bad.

In the end, 159 division level and 968 subdivision level cadres were not used. Most of those were either not allowed to participate in the competition because Wang Lijun put trumped-up charges on them, or they passed the competition but Wang did not like them and did not want to use them. Recently, this group of cadres went through re-examination, and 76 division level cadres and 299 subdivision level cadres were reappointed.  For those who have reached the retirement age, their treatment is retained but they no longer work on key posts. For the few with very low public acceptance and poor performance, we did not reappoint.

1123 police demanded vindication

SW: Recently, we keep hearing that the Chongqing police launched a large scale internal vindication. How many police have been vindicated?

Chongqing Police Official: In May, we set up a special review team headed by a Deputy Chief, to specifically accept and review complaints of police who had been punished. So far we received a total of 1123 police complaints. Because some of the cases involve multiple individuals, the number of police that require review is 2202. So far 1796 have been reviewed; 78% of the original decisions were overturned, 13% retained,  and 9% modified. A number of departmental, division and subdivision police have resumed their duties and received retroactive wages.  So far 133 resumed their leadership positions, including 48 at the division level, and 85 at the subdivision level. Among another 9 cadres at deputy departmental level who had been dismissed, 3 have resumed their positions, and another six are under review.

SW: Why have so many police officers been punished? In what situations have the original decisions been overturned, retained, or modified respectively? With so much revocation, it's tempting to think some problematic police are returning to their posts.

Chongqing Police Official: Let me give you a few examples:

One, in 2010 a middle school student drowned in Yongchuan District. The district police investigated and concluded it was suicide. But the family refused to accept the conclusion, they posted on the internet and  advertised on the streets offering a reward. After Wang Lijun learned about this, he called the district police chief and demanded an immediate arrest of that family. The district chief did not make the arrest, instead he let the family and school negotiate compensation.  Later the family went to petition the Municipal Police Bureau. Wang Lijun got very angry, he called the district chief to his municipal office, scolded him, and requested the family members of the deceased to be sent to labor camp.  The district chief did not follow Wang's instructions.  Soon Wang Lijun removed him from his position and transferred him to the command center to work as a common police for nine months. Only after the new municipal police chief arrived this year, was he able to resume his position. He now serves as the director of the police coordination department.

Two, cadres were indicted for little things. Once, Wang Lijun went to Kaixian County for an inspection, and the county police bureau's reception for his visit did not meet his high standard.  Wang was very unhappy. After he returned, he immediately let his deputy chief Tang Jianhua form a work team to investigate the county police bureau's leadership. In the end, they listed more than 50 counts of crimes and removed most of the county police leaders and a large number of cadres. Another time, Wang Lijun passed by the Discipline Committee's office and saw the toilet window's blinds were broken, he dismissed the entire office. Anywhere he went, even out of Chongqing, he required his office staff to tell hotel staff that, when pouring wine for him, the wine must be substituted with water. Sometimes the hotel staff made a mistake and poured wine instead of water, Wang would get mad and punish a bunch of his office staff.

Cases that have been overturned were mostly this kind of small mistakes, not enough for Party discipline or administrative sanctions. At that time, Wang Lijun used "admonishing talk" for actual punishment to affect police's normal promotion. For example, after one year of service, if the person got an "admonishing talk," he would not get a formal position. After investigation, we revoked the sanction on those comrades.

On the other hand, 13% of the police whose sanctions are maintained did have problems. For example, some police drove a police car to beat up civilians. The director of a police station didn't go to the [crime] site after receiving reports, instead he demanded the off-duty deputy director go; the delay caused the suspect to flee and run over a person. These people, under Wang Lijun or not, must be punished by law. In some cases of over-punishment, charges were reduced after our investigation.

On police vindication, the former secretary of the Politics and Law Committee, Liu Guanglei and the current secretary, Liu Pu, all gave specific instructions and guidance. They requested us to do a good job on ideological work.  The Municipal Commission for Discipline Inspection, the Organizational Department, and the Politics and Law Committee all gave us a lot of support. Currently, Chongqing's police force has gradually stabilized.

SW: Recently, there has been news that the Chongqing police had often used torture to extract confessions, is it true?

Chongqing Police Official: Recently some people were talking about Tieshanping. (Editorial note: According to media reports, a militia training base located on top of  Chongqing's Tieshanping Forest Park had been used as the "outsourced interrogation base" for the "smash black" campaign). Whether there existed torture is under investigation by the People’s Procuratorate. I won't comment on specific cases, but let me make two statements:  first, the police departments must serve their duties to fight against crime and protect the people, any cases violating the criminal law and endangering people's lives and property, the police must handle in accordance with law. Second, any cases handled by Chongqing police, no matter when, no matter what kind, as long as there is a complaint, we will strictly and carefully review according to law, fairly and justly deal according to law.

SW: I feel you now blame Wang Lijun for lots of the problems; Why didn't the Chongqing Police Bureau's Party Committee play its due role of supervision and discipline?

Chongqing Police Official: I'll give you a few more examples. Because a policeman from Wushan County petitioned,  Wang Lijun punished the entire leadership of the county's police bureau. The news was spread on the internet, then a bunch of comrades in the Propaganda Division were punished.  At a Party Committee meeting, a committee member suggested that "We shouldn't overthrow a large number [of cadres]."  Wang pounded the table, "XXX, screw you! Shut up your stinky mouth!"
When Woman's Traffic & Patrol Police was established, the uniform they used was not the one regulated by the Ministry of Public Security, but was designed by the order of Wang Lijun. One of the Party Committee Members suggested that the Ministry of Public Security has clear regulation on uniforms, and this [design] resulted in a serious breach of the regulation. Wang Lijun was very angry: "XXX, do you mean only you understand the Ministry's regulations but not me? Only you follow the decision of the Ministry but not me?" The committee member had to say: "I didn't mean that, I was just doing my duty as a deputy." Wang Lijun said, "It's okay to make suggestions, but always think twice before you do."

Wang Lijun publicly claimed at a Party committee meeting: "Let me tell you, I can remove, even arrest, the entire leadership of the Party Committee within a day." At a police General Assembly, Wang Lijun also said publicly: "All of you (in the audience), including those leaders on the stage, I can get within a day."  That sort of thing, first you are unable to change, second you'd do yourself in.

SW: We always say that the current regulations are all very good, then why did those things happen under such a good system?

Chongqing Police Official: This is for individual reasons. Under the same system, why do we perform well now?

SW: Aren't there things worthy of rethinking?

Chongqing Police Official: Power was not restrained, power was abused. The lack of monitoring is what led to some lawless things happening in the Chongqing Municipal Police Bureau.

SW:  Did Wang Lijun have some good aspects?

Chongqing Police Official: Some things seem like his merits. For example, he requested that, if a police officer has a traffic accident, whether it's the police's responsibility or not, he must be detained. Of course some people supported this.  Public support is of course a good thing, but sometimes the law was violated in order to win some people's support, which shouldn't be done.  On the other hand, even though Wang Lijun punished a lot of people, sometimes he would use capable individuals who had offended him. #

(You can read the Chinese text here.)

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