China to revise oath of allegiance for officials

China introduced oath-taking for officials in January 2016, based on a legislative decision passed in 2015.
China introduced oath-taking for officials in January 2016, based on a legislative decision passed in 2015.PHOTO: REUTERS

BEIJING (XINHUA) - China plans to revise the oath of allegiance to the Constitution taken by people in public office to include adjectives of "great" and "modern" before "a socialist country."

The draft revision was submitted to a session of the Standing Committee of the National People's Congress (NPC), the top legislature, for review on Friday (Feb 23).

China introduced oath-taking for officials in January 2016, based on a legislative decision passed in 2015.

While most parts of the oath remain unchanged, the last phrase is suggested to be changed into "to work for a great modern socialist country that is prosperous, strong, democratic, culturally advanced, harmonious, and beautiful," according to the draft.

Zhang Yong, vice-chair of the Legislative Affairs Commission of the NPC Standing Committee, said the change was made to align the oath with the country's development goal envisioned by the Communist Party of China (CPC) at its 19th National Congress last October.

Briefing the lawmakers, Zhang said members of supervisory commissions at all local levels and those of a upcoming national supervisory commission should also be required to take the oath upon assuming office.

All oath takers should be required to sing the national anthem, he said.

Senior NPC deputies have said pledging allegiance to the Constitution is important to the advancement of the rule of law and to raising the public's awareness of the Constitution.

The Constitution was adopted on Dec 4, 1982. It is expected to be amended for the fifth time in March when the 13th NPC convenes its first session.