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

Driver carrying gun arrested

08 Dec 2018 Hits:124 Be the first to comment!

A public utility jeepney (PUJ) driver was arrested at a checkpoint manned by personnel of the Zamboanga City Mobile Force Company (ZCMFC) for possession of a homemade handgun at R.T. Lim Boulevard, Barangay San Jose Cawa-Cawa, Zamboanga City on Thursday. Arrested was Sahiron Rene Mohammad, 32, married, driver of the PUJ bearing plate number JVG-551, and a resident of Suterville, Barangay Campung Islam, this city. Recovered from him was a caliber .38 revolver with four live ammunition. Police report shows that ZCMFC personnel PO1 Mohammad Nur Sali and Alfie Paglinawan flagged down Sahiron for driving his PUJ without wearing seatbelt.When the police asked for his driver’s license, he failed to provide any. Accordingly, PO1 Sali saw something bulky on the driver’s waist that prompted [...] Read more

Prev Next Page:

City’s PESO, most outstanding in Zampen

07 Dec 2018 Hits:107 Be the first to comment!

City’s PESO, most outstanding in Zampen The Public Employment Service Office (PESO) under the City Social Welfare and Development (CSWDO) bagged the Most Outstanding City PESO in Zamboanga Peninsula award for [...] Read more


Robbery could be motive behind the killing of businesswoman: Police

07 Dec 2018 Hits:165 Be the first to comment!

The City Police Office has said that robbery could be the prime motive behind the brutal killing of a businesswoman whose body was found inside her room at R.U.A. Pension [...] Read more


Police apprehend husband, one other for mauling alleged wife’s lover

07 Dec 2018 Hits:163 Be the first to comment!

An alleged paramour was beaten by his lover’s husband and another companion at the vicinity of  Pasonanca Barangay Hall, this city, Thursday dawn. The victim was identified Paulino Durong y Toribio, [...] Read more


Gov. Ramos road rehab starts Dec. 11

06 Dec 2018 Hits:141 Be the first to comment!

City Hall has issued Executive Order 428 temporarily designating a section of Gov. Ramos Avenue in barangay San Roque as one way street to give way to the road rehabilitation [...] Read more


Red Cross Gov. Lobregat extends relief assistance to fire victims

06 Dec 2018 Hits:182 Be the first to comment!

Philippine Red Cross (PRC) Governor and Congressman Celso  L. Lobregat has provided necessary relief assistance to the victims of the recent fire incident in Johnston Street, Barangay San Jose Gusu, [...] Read more


Municipal councilor shot dead in Zamboanga del Sur

05 Dec 2018 Hits:160 Be the first to comment!

An incumbent municipal councilor in Zamboanga del Sur (ZDS) province was shot dead by unidentified riding-in-tandem gunmen in Purok 4, Barangay Bobongan in Ramon Magsaysay Municipality on Tuesday noon. The police [...] Read more


Guard loses motorcycle to robbers

19 Nov 2018 Hits:226 Be the first to comment!

A security guard of a telecommunication company was robbed by three suspects wearing bonnets who took his motorcycle at the PLDT tower site in Barangay Mercedes, Zamboanga City on Saturday. According [...] Read more


THANK GOD! It’s FRIDAY!

16 Nov 2018 Hits:187 Be the first to comment!

For the Tetuan Parish, that very common expression means literally just that, for on Friday, November 16, 2018, at 7 in the evening at the Centro Pastoral, the concert UN [...] Read more


Man stabbed in Rio Hondo

16 Nov 2018 Hits:230 Be the first to comment!

A bakery worker was stabbed and wounded by his co-worker in Sitio Hongkong, Barangay Rio Hondo, Zamboanga City on Wednesday night. Police Officer 3 Had-Anuar Edding, investigator-on-case, of Police Station 11 [...] Read more


Three nabbed for illegal drugs

16 Nov 2018 Hits:241 Be the first to comment!

Three persons were arrested when operatives of Police Station 9 seized from them 13 sachets of suspected shabu during a buy-bust operation at Barangay Recodo, Zamboanga City on Thursday dawn. Arrested [...] Read more


DOH 9 conducts training on GI, community-based treatment for PWUDs

15 Nov 2018 Hits:273 Be the first to comment!

The Department of Health Region IX (DOH 9) conducted the Training on General Intervention (GI) and Community-based Treatment Care Services for Person Who Use Drugs (PWUDs) from November 13-15, 2018. With [...] Read more


DENR-EMB 9 conducts SWM plan finalization of ZamPen LGUs

14 Nov 2018 Hits:279 Be the first to comment!

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Environmental Management Bureau (DENR-EMB) Region IX is conducting a 10-year Solid Waste Management (SWM) plan update and finalization of 33 local government units (LGUs) [...] Read more


Man accused of child abuse, arrested

13 Nov 2018 Hits:296 Be the first to comment!

Two teenagers filed a complaint for child abuse against a 55-year-old man at Police Station 7 last Sunday. Ellyn, married, a resident of Barangay Pasonanca, Zamboanga City, averred to the police [...] Read more


Brgy Chair nabs pedicab driver carrying shabu

13 Nov 2018 Hits:222 Be the first to comment!

A delivery boy was arrested in a buy-bust operation conducted by elements of Police Station 4 led by Chief Insp. Hazel Fernandez at Barangay Baliwasan, Zamboanga City  on Sunday. Police identified [...] Read more


Navforwem honors fleet-marine troops for rescue of KV Duterte

13 Nov 2018 Hits:310 Be the first to comment!

The Naval Forces Western Mindanao (Navforwem) has honored sailors, marines, Fleet-Marine personnel and navies for the successful rescue of kidnapped victim (KV) Jose Duterte and exceptional feats in the accomplishment [...] Read more


Police searching for armed man for mauling

12 Nov 2018 Hits:216 Be the first to comment!

A resident of Barangay Mampang, Zamboanga City, is now being hunted by personnel of Police Station 6 for mauling and totting his gun at another person on Sunday. Police report shows [...] Read more


Team Climaco condemns misinformation, fake news

09 Nov 2018 Hits:431 Be the first to comment!

Members of the Team Climaco have strongly criticized and condemned misinformation drive allegedly hatched by their political foes and propagandists, who are desperate to destroy the many and outstanding accomplishments [...] Read more


Man hacked by father-in-law

09 Nov 2018 Hits:230 Be the first to comment!

A man was hacked and wounded by his father-in-law at Sibiktol Drive, Barangay Arena Blanco, Zamboanga City, on Wednesday. The victim was identified as Jarrin Jalmaani y Gadong, married and a [...] Read more