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Anti-corruption campaign changes Chinese life
December 09,2016   By:Xinhua
BEIJING, Dec. 9, 2016 -- Ma Huisen used to have four or five lunches a day, though not because he was gluttonous, but because officials were taking advantage.
 
"We received many officials coming for 'inspection,'" said the vice Party chief of Ulagan county, western China's Qinghai province. By "inspection" he actually means "travelling."
 
The salt lake in Ulagan county is a popular tourist attraction, and it receives many groups of visiting officials every day. To show their hospitality, local officials would once accompany them on their entire journey. After the initiation of China's anti-corruption campaign, featuring the "Eight-point Rules," launched December 2012, Ma felt relieved.
"We don't have to drink so much liquor and spend so much time chatting around the dinner table," he said. "Now we can focus on improving people's livelihoods."
 
Friday is International Anti-Corruption Day, four days after the fourth anniversary of the release of the "Eight-point Rules". The rules, aimed at curbing extravagance and improving officials' work style, ban red carpet official receptions, the use of public vehicles for private affairs, pro forma meetings and traffic disturbances such as road closures for officials, and order austerity in official meals, travel and housing.
 
Many Chinese, civil servants and ordinary people saw changes in their daily lives.
 
Hu Xianmin (a pseudonym) has been working as a driver in a government department in northern China's Shanxi province for 16 years. He did not need to buy his own car until 2014.
 
"We once took pride in being able to use public vehicles," he said. In 2003 when his nephew was admitted into a university, he drove him to Beijing in a public vehicle..
 
Now all public vehicles in his department have been installed with GPS. Every evening the vehicles must be driven back to the garage.
 
"In the past when we went to the counties, local government officials gave us local specialties as gifts," Hu said. "Now we dare not receive such gifts. Those who violates the 'Eight-point Rules' will receive a public warning."
 
Zhang Xiaofeng, inspection officer with the party discipline commission in eastern China's Shandong province, has been involved in the province's discipline investigation of 19,235 civil servants, 8,583 of which were given discipline punishments since the start of the thrift campaign.
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