The work of people's congresses must be made more transparent as a step forward in promoting democracy and the rule of law, says an article in People's Daily. An excerpt follows:
On July 27, four senior local officials in Wenzhou, East China's Zhejiang Province, delivered their work reports live on television for review by the standing committee of the local people's congress, the legislature.
Days earlier, in Linfen, North China's Shanxi Province, the standing committee of the local people's congress held a seminar to deal with proposals from deputies that was also broadcast live.
These two cases, among others across the country, some say, indicate the workings of people's congresses at all levels are becoming more transparent - a trend that deserves applause.
Having an open people's congress brings many benefits, tangible and intangible alike.
First, such transparency instils a sense of responsibility and duty in the minds of elected officials.
If officials fail to secure votes of approval from more than half of the members of the standing committee of the people's congress in Wenzhou, they will be censured and probably sacked through proper procedures.
Second, openness makes deputies to a people's congress more prudent when assuming power.
Elected by the people, these deputies are more inclined to faithfully and dutifully carry out their obligations if their work is subject to close public scrutiny.
In Linfen many deputies say they feel an increased sense of responsibility to properly represent their constituency and improve their performance.
Greater transparency will make the public feel more connected to democracy and the advancement of the rule of law.
People's congress' increased openness will not only guarantee the public's right to know but will also make society more respectful of the law and democracy.
It will strengthen public supervision of the authorities.