Chinese Official Sentenced To Death For Taking Bribe

A Chinese municipal official, Zhou Jianhua, has been sentenced to death with a two-year reprieve for accepting more than one million dollars in bribes.

The official news agency Xinhua, which reported this on Thursday, highlighted the government’s efforts to crackdown on graft.

It said Zhou had chaired the standing committee of the People’s Congress of Xinyu city in the southern province of Jiangxi, citing the Jiangxi Higher People’s Court.

It said Zhou had accepted 1.6 million dollars, tens of thousands of U.S. and Hong Kong dollars as well as three gold bars and objects worth 38,991 dollars.

A higher court is currently handling a retrial of the case, Xinhua added.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has made fighting pervasive graft a priority since taking office last March.

He warned, like others before him, that corruption threatens the ruling Communist Party’s very survival.

But the government’s crackdown on activists calling for officials to disclose their wealth exposes Beijing’s ambivalence in rooting out corruption as the leadership works to crush any challenge to its dominance.

China has waged a ten-month campaign against the New Citizens’ Movement which advocates working within the system to bring about change, including pressing officials to disclose their assets.

Its leading campaigner, Xu Zhiyong, went on trial this week in the country’s most high-profile dissident case in years.

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