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Livecasting gives residents say in officials’ performance evaluations

Chinadaily / ON FRIDAY, the Beijing government held its performance evaluation conference, at which 60 local governmental departments and 16 district governments reported on their work in 2017 to a group of about 240 leading officials, legislative deputies and political advisers. The text record and photos of the meeting were posted in real time on social media. Legal Daily comments:

At the gate of almost every domestic government agency, there hangs the same slogan: “Serve the people.” That should be the principle of every government department.

The leading officials of local government departments report their work over the previous year, but in the past it was mainly their superior officials and legislative deputies who heard their reports and evaluated their job performances. As a result, many local officials tended to flatter their superiors in order to get a better evaluation; Worse, some local officials told lies and fabricated the data in their reports, thinking the higher officials had no other channel of knowing the truth.

That’s why some people called many of the annual work reports a “show”.

The move by Beijing this year has set a good example by livecasting the whole process on social media. In this way, ordinary residents have a channel for reading what the local officials say and pointing out any false claims. In turn, that’s also a warning to governmental officials to tell the truth, because they know any lie in their work reports will be picked out by residents.

Of course, it is only a first step to “livecast” the work report of local officials. In order for ordinary residents to effectively supervise officials, it is necessary to allow them to evaluate the officials’ performance, which should be included in the final job evaluation of the officials.

More importantly, the officials who are found to be telling lies in their work reports must be given proper legal punishments.

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