Top China reformer calls to rein in communist power
BEIJING (AFP) - A top Communist Party reformer has called for reforms to rein in the unchecked power of China's ruling party as the only way to modernise the nation, on the eve of a once-in-a-decade leadership transition.
Mr Hu Deping, son of former party head and reformer Hu Yaobang whose death in 1989 sparked the Tiananmen Square democracy protests, said the party needed to cast off the trappings of China's imperial past and advance constitutional governance.
His comments, carried in the current issue of the respected Economic Observer weekly newspaper, come as the party opens its 18th congress on Thursday, ushering in a 10-yearly leadership transition that will see President Hu Jintao step down as party chief before he retires as president in March.
"There are too many times when power becomes bigger than the law, when the power of the party and government interferes with the judicial process," Mr Hu, who is unrelated to Hu Jintao, wrote.