December 03, 2008
1. In 1978, the task of improving socialist democracy and reinforcing the socialist legal system was put forward during the Third Plenary Session of 11th Central Committee. The session pointed out that in order to protect people's democracy, the socialist legal system must be strengthened and the democratic system must be institutionalized and legalized. It also outlined that institutions and laws should be stable, continuous and authoritative, thus insuring that the laws will be followed, observed, strictly enforced, and if violated, law-breakers will be prosecuted.
2. In 1987, it was pointed out at the 13th CPC National Congress that China was at the primary stage of socialism and would remain so for a long period of time. Separating the functions of the party from those of the government was especially discussed in the 13th CPC National Congress report. Amendments concerning "competitive elections" were added into the Constitution of the CPC, which was revised at the 13th CPC National Congress.
3. In 1992, it was clarified at the 14th CPC National Congress that the goal of the reforms of China's economic system was to establish a socialist market economy system. It was stipulated in the Amendment to the Constitution of the PRC (1993) that China adopts a socialist market economy.
4. In 1997, the 15th CPC National Congress set targets to run the country according to laws and to build a socialist country under the rule of law. Fundamental guidelines for running the country according to law were written into the Constitution of the PRC in 1999.
5. In 1998, the Organic Law of the Villagers Committees of the PRC was officially promulgated to carry out self-government by the villagers in vast rural areas, replacing the Organic Law of the Villagers Committees (Interim) which had been approved ten years ago.
6. In 2002, the 16th CPC National Congress clearly proposed strong adherence to the unity of the party's leadership. The combination of the people being the masters and running the country according to law are the two fundamental principles of the construction of a socialist political democracy. "Two civilizations" was expanded to "three civilizations," which includes socialist material civilization, spiritual civilization and political civilization.
8. In 2004, the Amendment to the Constitution of the PRC was passed at the Second Session of the Tenth NPC. The concept of "human rights" was written into the Constitution for the first time. It is clearly stipulated that "China respects and protects human rights" and "citizens' lawful private property is inviolable."
9. In 2004, the State Council issued the "Program for Comprehensively Implementing Government Administration in Accordance with the Law," which sets forth the goal of building a government under the rule of law.
10. In 2007, the 17th CPC National Congress stated that the people's democracy is the lifeblood of socialism and it is the party's objective to unswervingly pursue the development of a socialist democracy.
By People's Daily Online