China travel

Published on January 28th, 2012 | by Paz


China News: Some Chinese aggrieved find inspiration in rebel village

So what if you couldn’t say NO!? Many people are unhappy about what one political party is doing while the other then complains about the other political party. Yup…everyone seems unhappy. I would like us today to be happy about the ability to be “unhappy” and do something about it. This article made me remember this today! Happy unhappiness.

Some Chinese aggrieved find inspiration in rebel village

By James Pomfret

WANGGANG, China (Reuters) РAs China gears up for a leadership transition, a small fishing village that stood up to official corruption and rural land grabs has become a touchstone for other communities striving to fight back against grassroots abuses.

Since the uprising late last year in Wukan, a coastal village of 15,000 in southern China’s Guangdong province that challenged and won key concessions from provincial officials, other rural communities have taken note, and in some isolated cases, sprung to action.

About 1,000 residents of Wanggang, a gritty suburb of leather factories and shabby tenement blocks, recently massed outside the gates of the Guangdong provincial capital Guangzhou, holding a rare large-scale protest against a major Chinese city government.

For some of them, Wukan has become a new rallying cry for their own battle against public graft.

“If China doesn’t change and help … vulnerable residents in villages, every village might develop into a Wukan,” said a stocky 33-year-old surnamed Li, who took part in the rally against Wanggang’s Communist Party village chief, Li Zhihang, whom they accuse of plundering land and widespread fraud.

While few expect Wukan to be a catalyst for any broader tumult across China, it is emerging as a new benchmark of rural activism in some communities, a symbol of hope for residents suffering longstanding abuses of power from corrupt local officials often in collusion with businessmen.

Guangdong province has seen its share of unrest, from strikes to riots in Zengcheng over oppressive behavior against migrant workers. The province’s prominent party boss, Wang Yang, must avoid serious policy mistakes damaging his prospects for promotion in a watershed leadership transition late this year.

By invoking the name of Wukan, Wanggang villagers believe they won a swifter response from edgy officials. Read more

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About the Author

Paz is an avid adventurer in life and food. Traveling across the globe with her family they enjoy cultural immersion and checking out the local eateries.

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