Early retirement of â€˜naked officialâ€™ sends positive signal Source:Global Times Published: 2014-5-21 0:23:01 Fang Xuan, former deputy Communist Party chief of Guangzhou and reportedly a "naked official," quit recently, five months before his official retirement age of 60 in October. Some have interpreted this as China's first case of removing a "naked official," referring to an official whose children and spouse have both emigrated abroad. It is reported that several important inner-Party disciplinary documents issued earlier this year impose strict stipulations on "naked officials." It seems that Fang's early retirement relates to these new stipulations. This first case is meaningful for China's governance of officials. Society has come to the conclusion that "naked officials" should be removed from important posts, but implementation is not easy. It is hard to define "naked officials," since the situation in reality is very complex and diversified. While some believe we should not mistake every bush and tree for an enemy, public opinion tends to broaden the definition of "naked officials." Some even insist on including officials with children studying abroad. This will not help find real "naked officials." Currently it is an uneasy task to precisely learn information about the residence of Chinese officials' families. Some officials hide the information or temporarily bring back their family members from overseas. It is not difficult for incumbent officials to blur such information. The public urges the authorities to take tougher measures against "naked officials." Take the Fang case. For the authorities, it is an important precedent set through Fang's early retirement. But many think this is too merciful a treatment, and they call for a probe into his performance. The public generally equates "naked officials" with corrupt ones. For the authorities, what's most important now is to consolidate determination in coping with the "naked official" phenomenon, and fit it into the big picture of the anti-graft campaign. It is uneasy to define "naked officials," but grasping the precise information about officials, especially senior ones, is very important. This will help build a healthy awareness among public servants: Being an official means accepting certain restrictions rather than receiving privileges. Many countries are on guard against the "naked official" phenomenon. China should especially pay attention to it. China needs officials' loyalty, which is often lacking among those who seek to be or already are "naked." It can be expected that Chinese authorities will only deal with "naked officials" more rigorously. "Naked officials" are not necessarily corrupt, but the chances of them being involved in corruption seem higher. Disciplinary organs need to heed more to this group. As China is increasingly open, officials' children and spouses should not be completely deprived of the right to study or work abroad. To balance these goals is vital. Fang's case is just a beginning. Early retirement of â€˜naked officialâ€™ sends positive signal - Global Times ************************************************** What is a 'naked official'? Maybe some Chinese poster can help. How come if children study abroad of functionaries, they become 'naked officials'. Is it a 'catch all' to impose an authoritarian grip over the officials so that they do not veer from the diktats of the CPC?