China’s unique system of governance: Part Two…time Africa indigenised governance


NATIONAL People’s Congress is held every five years in Beijing, China, during which party decisions are made.
A central committee is elected by the party’s congress and it in turn, elects a politburo standing committee with approximately 25 individuals.
In the politburo, there are seven senior positions (formerly nine), and this makes up the echelon of the party.
Among the top politburo members, there is the most senior party position called the General Secretary of the CCP or CPC Central Committee.
Whoever is the General Secretary of the party, is by default, the Chairman of the Central Military Committee and head of state.
So there is the party, the military and the state which are all led by the Chairman or President of China.
The fact that China’s leaders are elected according to their technical expertise is very scientific and democratic because it serves the people and country well.
All this is done without campaigning, but is solely performance-based.
Besides the National People’s Congress, there is also an equally important Chinese People Political Consultative Conference held annually, during which advisory information is passed to government.
Any opposition or suggestions regarding policies have this platform to air their thoughts and this is another sign of democracy within communism.
The National People’s Congress and the Chinese People Political Consultative Conference are known as lianghui which literally means the two meetings.
One of these meetings was held about a month ago, but business went on as usual besides the tightening of security measures. During the meeting, new high level politburo members were selected and named.
All without campaigns or public voting.
The country remained peaceful and the process went on smoothly without interference from the West.
Such is China’s unique system of governance.
The Chinese way of holding elections is more formal and less of a circus than that of the West.
China has strict measures set in place for individuals involved in corruption, treason and other major violations.
This has been called authoritarian by some people but is no different from the US whose citizens have faced imprisonment and forced exile if accused of the same crimes.
For example, Edward Snowden who allegedly exposed state secrets is currently in exile.
Another is William Cooper who was killed during the course of his arrest just a month after the September 11 incident of 2001.
The one party system of China is far from a dictatorship.
No one man has power over the government and their leaders are truly servants of the Chinese people.
Unlike Western democracy, the one party system achieves cohesive legislation, continuity of ideals and projects and can set long-term political and economic reforms.
Western democracy has failed in this respect. Once a new party takes over in presiding over the country, many policies are reversed.
For example, Obama’s healthcare programme was compromised when Trump came into power.
This has also been evident in African countries that have taken up Western democracy and as a result, there seems to be no chance for long-term policies to be successful.
When a predecessor takes one step forward, the successor might take two steps back.
In China before 1912, the right to take over ruling lay with princes from royal families.
This was the case in Zimbabwe before colonisation.
Zimbabwe and the rest of Africa had traditional ways of governing their kingdoms, but these were all disturbed by the coming of the whites, as was also the case in China.
But China, unlike African countries, has made great strides in modelling their own system of governance in the contemporary period.
This is a goal that each nation must seek instead of upholding a universal way of governance; there is no ‘one size fits all’.
Zimbabweans only began the voting system after the whites had stolen the land and made themselves legible voters while leaving out the indigenous people of the land.
Thus it was important at that time for blacks to vote whites out of power as they were a small minority trying to dominate the black majority.
But after gaining power as black Zimbabweans, is it still necessary for political parties to work so viciously against each other as has been the case in Zimbabwe and other African countries in the past few decades?
The nation needs a clear road map.
Unfortunately, Western democracy makes way for hindrances from progress from both in and outside the country.
China is safe from this external intervention because of its solid performance-based structure which leaves no room for stakeholding third parties to fund campaigns against the ruling government, notorious for promoting sabotage and imposing sanctions.
In Zimbabwe, election time is costly, tense and at times violent.
This violence and chaos can be influenced by external forces.
Zimbabwe, and Africa in general, can learn from China and seek to form a way of governance that is unique to itself and its region.
Opposition does not have to be so vicious, but can be constructive in bringing up useful criticism.
The West does not like terms such as ‘one party state’, ‘nationalise’ and so on because they depend on continents like Africa and Asia for resources.
If the governments of these regions become empowered, the West will have no influence and thus get less benefits.
Thus a big question mark should be raised when terms loved by the West such as ‘democracy’, ‘capitalism’ and ‘globalisation’ are used.
Our governance gives loopholes that make us susceptible to abuse from the West.
The West is failing to sustain its economies and they are losing the trust and support of their own citizens.
Why then should their way of governance be admirable to Africa which developmentally is on a very different level to the US.
To achieve their interests in procuring resources like oil at favourable prices, the West has sponsored war in several parts of Africa and Asia.
Libya was prosperous when its own system of governance was functional.
After the assassination of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi by Obama’s forces and the introduction of Western democracy to the region, Libya has been in a shambles.
We ought to seek for a scientific way, not necessarily that of the Chinese, but one that will work for us as Africans if we are ever going to realise the fruits of development.
Otherwise our resources, be they human, forestry, minerals or wildlife will end up benefiting strong corporations from the West. This has been the case since colonisation.
Like the land, the system of governance of Africa must be indigenised.


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