Corruption museum seeks nominations

BEIJING: A planned anti-graft museum in southwest China is asking the public to nominate the 100 most corrupt officials of the past century, state media reported today.

Fan Jianchuan, who operates a private museum in Chengdu, said he started collecting artifacts for his “Traitors Museum” after Internet users suggested the idea, Xinhua news agency said, citing a local newspaper.

“Starting now, the museum will accept nominations from the masses who can then vote on the museum’s web site,” Fan was quoted as saying.

His biggest concern is that he will be overwhelmed by too many suggestions.

“Of course places are limited, we must consider the level (of corruption),” he said.

Criteria for deciding the top 100 will include the official’s position, how much they stole, by what means, the circumstances and the impact of their corruption, he said.

The museum would provide cautionary tales and help deter future corruption, he said.

Fan said he would ask the Communist Party’s disciplinary committee for support and envisions the museum as an anti-corruption education centre, possibly even providing tours for criminals serving prison sentences.

The report did not specify when the museum planned to open its doors, but it would be part of his existing complex that already has small museums about the Communist Revolution and China’s fight against Japan in World War II.

Premier Wen Jiabao acknowledged earlier this month that rampant official corruption remained a problem despite years of efforts to stamp it out and admitted the issue threatened the Communist Party’s ability to rule.