Chinese Village Protests Take Down Top Dogs of Local Corruption
By Daniel Rabanales, Marketing –
A group of Chinese villagers are winning the fight against corruption as they defend their homes. The Xian villagers have been protesting against corrupt officials since 2009 and each summer they gather to celebrate their progress. In 2014, they saw a particularly noteworthy achievement as the state media released a report congratulating Xian village for exposing an “iron triangle of corruption” among village officials, local developers and the city’s deputy major.
A Little Background
Officials in China are attempting to mobilize 250 million rural people from their village homes into the cities by 2025. Local officials acknowledge the challenges that these villages pose to their social infrastructure and have announced plans to redevelop all of them by the end of the decade. Xian village exemplifies the challenge these officials face as they try to begin this process.
Xian village is one of the 139 “urban villages” that make up Guangzhou, a region with 13 million people living near southern China’s economic epicenter. To try and force them out, government officials constructed a high, concrete wall that crowds the 4,000 residents in a space roughly the size of eight soccer fields. Despite these efforts, however, the residents in Xian refused to leave, conducting a series of marches and petitions to express their disagreement.
The friction between villages and government officials has grown as villagers now realize how corrupt officials have taken advantage of them. Under Chinese law, the government has claim over urban land, while the villagers have claim over rural land. Local governments, in their selfish efforts to make money, have requisitioned that land to sell it to developers at the expense of villagers.
As villagers continued to receive low compensation packages for the land they owned for centuries, the protests only grew bigger every year. The journey for these villagers, however, has not been easy, as they faced violence and reprisals from police and law enforcement.
Making a Change with Deception Detection
New leaders in office are now helping these villagers in their efforts to end corruption, reflecting new approaches to Chinese politics and party rule. These villagers’ efforts have led to the discovery and eventual investigation and trial of local corrupt officials. As an Assistant Professor at South China Normal University Chen Hong pointed out, “The smart thing they’re doing in Xian is that they’re not fighting for a specific amount of compensation — they’re fighting against official corruption.”
To aid people around the world in uncovering and fighting government corruption, deception detection technology could play a significant role. EyeDetect™ is the newest development in lie technology and has been employed with 85 percent accuracy. It’s completely non-intrusive and requires only that the subject sit at a computer and answers questions while its infrared eye tracker measures eye behavior. This means that corrupt government officials could be caught early on and stopped before crimes occur.