My Google Page Rank

China's school bus donation to Macedonia derided

PDFPrintE-mail

BEIJING — China's donation of school buses to tiny Macedonia has touched off derision online, where Chinese have called the gift ill-considered given their country's poor safety record and a recent crash that killed 19 preschoolers.

The Chinese government's gift of 23 buses was made Friday at a ceremony in Macedonia's capital.

The Macedonian government said on its website that each bus has 35 seats, meets all safety requirements and will be used for students primarily in rural areas. An accompanying photo showed three yellow buses with the red-and-yellow Chinese and Macedonian flags painted on the side.

News of the donation ignited a torrent of criticism, with 500,000 comments posted by Monday to Sina Weibo, China's most popular Twitter-like micro-blog service, run by Sina Corp. Many asked: How could China make the donation to a foreign country when Chinese schools contend with shoddy transport?

Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei would not comment on the online furor but did say the buses were provided under a 2010 agreement. He said China had accepted large amounts of foreign aid — including assistance from Macedonia during a major earthquake in Sichuan in 2008 — and was now providing assistance of its own.

Zhang Ming, a politics professor at Renmin University, suggested the donation was a betrayal to the Chinese people.

"One does not have to go through exams to get qualifications (to be a traitor). When one climbs up there and becomes a big official, one will have them," he wrote on Sina Weibo.

Zheng Yuanjie, a children's literature writer who is often sarcastic in his postings, wrote that the foreign ministry had donated the buses to Macedonia in order to "urge local governments to give decent buses to schools" in China.

As many pointed out, the donation comes less than two weeks after the death of the 19 preschoolers drew a harsh spotlight to the condition of Chinese school buses and chronic underfunding of school systems. The 19 children died when a minivan-turned-school bus crammed with 64 people crashed into a truck in a rural area of northwest China.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao promised Sunday that new rules on school bus safety would be drafted within a month and said central and local governments will bear the cost of bringing buses up to standard.

The fracas shows how the authoritarian government gets out of step with popular sentiment, and, while that has not mattered in past decades, the government can come across as looking foolish in the Internet era.

While a statement from the Chinese Embassy in Macedonia about the buses was still available online Monday, a similar statement had been removed from the website of China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The state-run Global Times newspaper said in a commentary Monday that the rhetoric of public criticism had become stronger and "sometimes even aggressive" in recent years. "Although it is hard to say whether each of these criticisms are reasonable and appropriate, the government needs to learn how to live with it," it said. "Some 'disturbance' from the public is not bad to the government" as it is necessary for quality governance, it said.

On Saturday, a school bus carrying 39 people in northeast Liaoning province rolled over, injuring 35 students, including two 7-year-old girls with serious head injuries, the China Daily reported.




Related news items:
Newer news items:
Older news items:

Add comment


Security code
Refresh

LGU, gov’t agencies to forge MOA on water monitoring project

08 May 2018 Hits:355 Be the first to comment!

The local government will be forging a partnership with national government agencies for a water monitoring project on Friday, May 11. City Planning Officer Engr. Rodrigo Sicat on Monday, May 7, announced the upcoming partnership between the LGU, the National Water Resources Board, and the Department of Science and Technology – Philippine Council for Industry, Energy, and Emerging Technology Research and Development (DOST – PCIEERD) for the establishment of ground water monitoring wells. Under the project, four wells will be established in Calarian, the Sanitary Landfill, Putik, and Tugbungan. These are real-time ground monitoring stations that will feed information via cellular network and uploaded real-time, Sicat explained. “The Ateneo de Manila University, who is also a partner on this project, will inform us [...] Read more

Prev Next Page:

Four Kidnap victims rescued in Zamboanga del Norte

14 Mar 2018 Hits:730 Be the first to comment!

Four kidnap victims, who were held captive for nine days in Sirawai town, Zamboanga del Norte, have been escued, the military said. The Western Mindanao Command's spokesperson, Capt. Jo-Ann Petinglay, said [...] Read more


Beng urges women: Be brave, be strong

09 Mar 2018 Hits:614 Be the first to comment!

In celebration of women empowerment, Mayor Beng Climaco urged all women to be brave and strong amidst challenges and difficulties. Speaking to hundreds of women and men who joined the Marcha [...] Read more


CA denies Musa’s motion on IP seat in City Council

09 Mar 2018 Hits:670 Be the first to comment!

The Court of Appeals has denied Ismael Musa’s motion for reconsideration relative to his assertion as sectoral representative of the Indigenous People in the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Zamboanga City. In a [...] Read more


City welcomes Curuan-Sibuco road

07 Mar 2018 Hits:764 Be the first to comment!

Mayor Beng Climaco has welcomed the inclusion of the Curuan-Sibuco road project, one of the subprojects proposed under Improving Growth Corridors in Mindanao Road Sector Project (IGCMRSP) of the Department [...] Read more


Beng welcomes Litlit’s appointment as SP member

15 Feb 2018 Hits:882 Be the first to comment!

President Rodrigo Duterte has appointed San Roque Barangay Chairman Joselito “Litlit” Macrohom as member of the Sangguniang Panlungsod or City council replacing Charlie Mariano who stepped down from office last [...] Read more


City Registrar observes Civil Reg Month

15 Feb 2018 Hits:717 Be the first to comment!

The city, through the Office of the City Civil Registrar,is observing the Civil Registration Month this February with several activities highlighting the importance of civil registration. The month-long observance is punctuated [...] Read more


CHO stresses need for measles vaccination

14 Feb 2018 Hits:687 Be the first to comment!

The City Health Office (CHO) yesterday appealed to parents to submit their children for measles vaccination. This after a seven-month baby died last February 6, 2018 allegedly due to measles, five [...] Read more


MYEISHA JOLO DOWN M.LOZANO TAWI – TAWI

11 Jan 2018 Hits:747 Be the first to comment!

Este el Istoria del Jong Cariaga Mindanao Cup 2018 que ya hace na Golden Boys gym anoche. Ya sale Champion el Myeisha Jolo kay completo todo departamento del juego especialmente [...] Read more


BFP personnel to undergo fire suppression activities

10 Jan 2018 Hits:661 Be the first to comment!

Personnel of the Bureau of Fire Protection in Zamboanga City will undergo fire suppression trainings in the days to come in a bid to keep them abreast of the firefighting [...] Read more


RED CORALS UNITED Y RESTO DEL MUNDO FC –TABLA

10 Jan 2018 Hits:630 Be the first to comment!

Del Domingo pasao ya mira kita con el Resto Del Mundo FC contra Red Corals United donde ya sale Tabla el juego na Soccer Football. Amo quel el ultimo juego [...] Read more


TFZ gets 10 motorcycles from City Government

09 Jan 2018 Hits:682 Be the first to comment!

Task Force Zamboanga (TFZ) on Monday received from the local government 10 units of XRM motorcycles for security patrols in the outskirts of the city. Mayor Beng Climaco together with Councilor [...] Read more


Beng leads destruction of seized items

09 Jan 2018 Hits:659 Be the first to comment!

To show the Local Government’s firm commitment to public safety and security, Mayor Beng Climaco on Monday personally maneuvered a road roller and led the destruction of seized items such [...] Read more


Warring clans arm cache seized by gov't troops in Lanao del Sur

09 Jan 2018 Hits:692 Be the first to comment!

The military on Saturday seized a cached of high-powered firearms from warring clans, following a clearing operation in Lanao del Sur province. Capt. Jo-Ann Petinglay, spokesperson of the Western Mindanao Command, [...] Read more


BOALAN AGM TEAM OUTSMART FARRAH J

09 Jan 2018 Hits:631 Be the first to comment!

MINDANAO LEAGUE 2018 BY JONG CARIAGA: Boalan Agm  nuevo star athlete Kaiwa Sabdulla y si Neil Jumao-as ya dale mira kay puede sila gana con el maga mapuersa team como el [...] Read more


ANIMO JORTZ SURPRISED FARRAH J TEAM

08 Jan 2018 Hits:546 Be the first to comment!

JONG CARIAGA BASKETBALL MINDANAO CUP ‘18. Que el juego ta ase na golden boys gym ta principia 7:00 del noche. Fritz Vesagas amo el ya ase gana con el disuyu [...] Read more


BASKETBALL THRILLA IN ZAMBOANGA

07 Jan 2018 Hits:575 Be the first to comment!

JONG CARIAGA MINDANAO CUP Este el un torneo que debe kita mira kay el team del Myiesha Jolo tiene 5 ex PBA athleta y el losdemas puru mga star players de [...] Read more


Climaco reiterates appeal to Customs: Stop smuggling

06 Jan 2018 Hits:1179 Be the first to comment!

Mayor Beng Climaco has once again appealed to the Bureau of Customs to clean up Zamboanga City against smuggling, and it can only be done if the agency will deputize [...] Read more


Escapee recaptured in Isabela

06 Jan 2018 Hits:618 Be the first to comment!

An inmate who escaped last Tuesday night from his cell in Isbela City was recaptured by the Isabela City Police on Wednesday afternoon in one of the islands in Maluso, [...] Read more