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China’s Vaccine Crisis: Over 100 Children Administered with Expired Vaccines

According to Chinese media, in the past month, at a health center in Jinhu County, Jiangsu Province, 145 infants and young children were vaccinated with an expired polio vaccine. After vaccination, a number of children developed adverse reactions. The batch number of the vaccines was 201612158 and was valid only until December 11, 2018. However, until one month after the expiration date, infants were still being administered the batch of polio vaccine.

One child’s mother said that, after her child was vaccinated, the child’s “fever ran as high as 39 degrees (Celsius) for half a month, together with coughing, catching a cold, and mild vomiting.” Other parents said that children showed rashes, a high fever, and other symptoms.

On January 10, the County authorities dismissed the responsible persons, including the deputy director of the local center for disease control, and launched an investigation into five of the medical staff.

The batch in which the polio vaccine in question was involved is a bivalent oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV), commonly known as “small sugar pill,” which is a free vaccine that China provides.

Since 1978, China has gradually implemented the “National Immunization Program” to determine vaccine varieties and programs according to different provinces and regions and to administer vaccinations among the population. At present, China provides free vaccinations for first class vaccines such as polio, hepatitis B, and DTP across the country. Hepatitis A, chickenpox, and rabies vaccines are second-class paid vaccines.

However, whether free or paid vaccines, there have been repeated safety incidents in China. Only six months before this incident, in July of last year, Chinese vaccine giant Changchun Changsheng was exposed over a fraud scandal involving the rabies vaccine.

In March 2016, in Shandong, 25 kinds of vaccines for children and adults were sold to 24 provinces and cities without the use of strict cold chain storage and transportation.

In March 2010, nearly 100 children in Shanxi either died or were disabled after vaccinations, causing widespread concern.

Source: BBC Chinese Channel, January 11, 2019
https://www.bbc.com/zhongwen/simp/chinese-news-46834106

CNA: White-Collar Party Members to Fill in Lunch Time Duty for “Xicheng Aunts”

All parts of China are filled with so-called community mass organizations. They usually clean the streets, perform public welfare work, and at the same time they take responsibility for ensuring public security. In Beijing, the group is called “Chaoyang Residents” or “Xicheng Aunts.” In Hangzhou, Zhejiang Province, they are called “Wulin Aunts.” According to a report from the Beijing Evening Newspaper, in Beijing’s Xicheng district, there are currently 81,885 registered “Xicheng Aunts” and the number of people involved in promoting “Peace in the Xicheng” project is over 100,000 with 1,452 special force teams.

The Central News Agency reported that these mass organizations in Beijing’s neighborhoods have repeatedly made contributions in reporting drug abuse in the community. Now Xicheng District intends to expand the group to involve the white-collar party members to be part of the group. The reason is that the existing members of Xicheng Aunts have to take a nap during the day. They wish to involve the white-collar party members so there will be no gap in the security patrol during the day.

According to Beijing Evening News, the idea of letting urban white-collar workers use their lunch break and put on uniforms to patrol the community is still under planning. It could be finalized next year. Once it comes true, the urban white-collar workers in Xicheng District will wear red vests and red armbands, and they will be active in the streets and lanes, becoming the “young age” Xicheng aunts.

In addition, since 2015, “Xicheng Aunts” has given tips on more than 30,000 pieces of illegal and criminal information, and assisted the public security organs in arresting more than 6,000 criminal suspects. In the near future, Xicheng District plans to use an open space to build a “Xicheng Aunts” exhibition hall to showcase the work that these “Xicheng aunts” have done.

Source: Central News Agency, December 16, 2018
https://www.cna.com.tw/news/acn/201812160054.aspx

China’s Supreme Court Denied Then Admitted Loss of Multibillion Dollar Case Document

Cui Yongyuan is a former Chinese television host and producer. He is known for leaking information regarding the Chinese film industry’s yin-yang contracts leading to movie star Fan Bingbing’s removal from the spotlight in 2018.

A number of Chinese media reports that Cui broke involved another story that there is a mole inside China’s Supreme Court that stole the appeal documents of a multibillion case in Shaanxi Province. The bizarre thing is that the Supreme Court first denied the loss of the document. As soon as Cui released the evidence, the Court withdrew its previous statement and, on December 29, announced it would “launch an investigation.”

The lost documents involve a lawsuit that Kechley Energy Investment initiated in 2006. In 2003, Kechley signed a contract with state-owned Xi’an Institute of Geological and Mineral Exploration (XIGME) to form a join coal-mining project in Yulin city of Shaanxi Province. In 2006, XIGME signed another contract with a third party – a company in Hong Kong – regarding the same coal-mining project without Kechley’s consent and without legally dismissing the previous contract.

In September 2010, Shaanxi’s high court ruled in favor of XIGME and suspended the license of Kechley. The plaintiff took the case to the Supreme Court. In August 2011, Zhao Faqi, general manager and corporate representative of Kechley, was illegally arrested by police in Yulin city and detained for 133 days.

In November 2016, when Supreme Court judge Wang Linqing prepared to hand down a verdict in favour of Kechley, all of the documents disappeared from his office. According to Wang, when he immediately told the presiding judge Cheng Xinwen, Cheng appeared unconcerned about the loss. Wang requested the video footage from closed circuit TV camera installed in his office. To Wang’s surprise, Cheng checked the video footage himself and told Wang that both closed circuit TV cameras had been broken on the day that the documents disappeared. Wang later reported to Supreme Court Chief Justice Zhou Qiang, who also appeared unconcerned and didn’t pursue an investigation.

Coincidentally, just 20 days before the loss, Kechley’s Zhao Faqi, reported with his real name over the Internet that Zhao Zhengyong, the former secretary of the Shaanxi Provincial Party Committee, and others intervened in the case.

In 2017, a year later, the Supreme Court issued a ruling in Kechley’s favour, awarding it 13.7 million yuan for breach of contract. “According to the South China Morning Post, the court has been unable to implement the verdict because of the missing documents and has not explained how the ruling could be made without those documents.”

Hong Kong based Apple Daily quoted media from China that the case files were “lost” because they contained the instructions from the Chief Justice and the President of the Supreme People’s Court Zhou Qiang, and the then Vice President Xi Xiaoming. Now, Xi has been removed from office, but Zhou is still there. Clearly someone wanted to have these particular instructions disappeared from the court records.

On December 26, on his Weibo account, Cui Yongyuan pointed out that the Supreme Court has a mole, stealing the files of the multi-billion-dollar case.

The next day, the Supreme Court issued a statement that what Cui said, “has no factual evidence, and is a rumor.” Cui immediately rebutted that the Supreme Court was lying and hinted that he had more evidence. Cui also quoted the insider’s description of the story and revealed that the judge’s name was Wang Linqing.

On December 29, after Cui Yongyuan posted two screenshots of the above-mentioned files on Weibo, the Supreme Court admitted that the file was missing, and said that it has initiated the investigation procedure. That night, another Chinese media Huaxia Times broadcast a selfie video of Supreme Court judge Wang Linqing. Wang said in the video that “the video is for myself, to protect myself from unpredictable events and leave some evidence.”

As the story began to spread across the Internet, all mainland based Chinese media reports were deleted.

Source: Radio France International, December 31, 2018
http://disq.us/t/3a1dcdl
South China Morning Post, December 30, 2018
https://www.scmp.com/news/china/society/article/2180042/chinas-supreme-court-forced-admit-it-lost-documents-long-running

Beijing Population Blue Book: Migrant and Registered Residents’ Population Declined

On December 9, the Beijing Population and Social Development Research Center under the Beijing Municipal Party School and the Social Science Literature Publishing House jointly released the Beijing Population Blue Book. According to the Blue Book, the latest data shows that the population of both migrants and registered residents in Beijing has declined.

In 2017, the resident population in Beijing was 21.707 million, a decrease of 22,000 from the end of the previous year. Among the residents, the migrant population was 7.943 million, a decrease of 132,000 compared to last year. The registered resident population was 13.592 million, a decrease of 37,000 from the end of the previous year, a drop of 3 percent.

Judging from the distribution of population at the district level, Chaoyang District has a resident population of 3.74 million, ranking first in all districts. Haidian District has a resident population of 3.48 million, ranking second. At the same time, these two districts also have a large number of migrants, totaling nearly 3 million, accounting for nearly 40 percent of the total migrant population. The populations of Miyun, Pinggu, Huairou, Yanqing, and Mentougou are relatively smaller, and the proportion of migrants is also lower.

In addition, since 2010, the education level of Beijing’s population has continued to improve and the proportion of middle school, high school education, and below has dropped from 43 percent in 2010 to 39 percent in 2017. The proportion of those with a high school education has not changed much. Those who hold a university associate degree or above has increased from 33 percent in 2010 to 37 percent in 2017. This means that nearly 40 percent of Beijing’s population has received a university education. Nearly one-fifth of them have received undergraduate education, and nearly 5 percent have received postgraduate education.

It is worth noting that population ageing is also deepening in Beijing. In 2010, the number of seniors who were 65 and above reached 1.709 million, accounting for 8.7 percent of the total population. In 2017, 2.376 million people were aged 65 and over, accounting for 10.5 percent of the total population. Corresponding to the increase in the proportion of seniors, the proportion of the working age population aged 15-64 has decreased year by year. The proportion dropped from 82.7 percent in 2010 to 78.6 percent.

Source: The Paper, December 9, 2018
https://www.thepaper.cn/newsDetail_forward_2721651

China Established Online Game Ethics Committee

According to China’s official Xinhua News Agency, under the guidance of the Communist Party’s Central Propaganda Department, an online game ethics committee was recently established in Beijing. Shortly after its establishment, the committee reviewed the first batch of 20 “morally problematic” online games and decided to disapprove of nine of them.

According to official media reports, the establishment of the online game ethics committee is an important measure to follow the guidance of CCP’s National Propaganda and Ideological Work Conference held in August, and to enrich the ideological and cultural contents of online games. The committee consists of experts and scholars from regulators, universities, professional institutions, and news media. Information such as the people and the organizational structure is not known. The committee was entitled to conduct an ethical review of online games and related services that may or may not have produced moral controversy and public opinion discussions.

The news itself has caused controversy among Chinese netizens. Some commented, “Whether a game is ethical or not, it should be judged by the majority of players and the whole society, instead of a few unidentified experts sitting at a desk.” Others voiced worry that such a so-called official “ethics committee” will appear in other areas of society in the future. Some netizens believe that such a unified approval model will limit the diverse and innovative development of the Chinese game industry.

Source: Radio France International, December 7, 2018
http://rfi.my/3Pk1.T

RFI Chinese: Human DNA Editor He Jiankui under House Arrest

Radio France Internationale (RFI) Chinese Edition recently reported that the University President of Shenzhen Southern University of Science and Technology brought He Jiankui, an Associate Professor from the Department of Biology, back from Hong Kong. Unverified Hong Kong media reported that He Jiankui is currently under house arrest at the University. Ever since his claim of successfully editing human DNA, He Jiankui has been criticized globally for his “achievement.” Recently, the University changed its position on He’s “success.” Commercial investments funded He Jiankui’s human DNA editing experiments and He Jiankui himself is the founder of two private DNA testing companies. There have been reports that the faculties from U.S. Rice University and Harvard University were also involved in these DNA editing experiments. However, the “team” chose He Jiankui due to China’s unclear laws on this matter.

Source: RFI Chinese, December 2, 2018
https://bit.ly/2QwNFFV