Inspirations from the Socialist Democratic System with Chinese Characteristics
Radio Dalsan Published an Article by Chargé d'Affaires Feng Qinghu
22 June 2021
Article 22 of the Provisional Constitution of the Federal Republic of Somalia sets down Somali citizens’ right of political participation, including the right to form political parties and to participate in their activities. This is in sharp contrast to the system of multiparty cooperation and political consultation under the leadership of the CPC applied in China.
Democracy has its essence. Marx and Engels said, “What is democracy? It must have a meaning, or it would not exist. It is all a matter, then, of finding the true meaning of democracy.” China is a socialist country of people’s democratic dictatorship under the leadership of the working class based on an alliance of workers and farmers. It is a country where all power of the state belongs to the people. The essence of socialist democracy with Chinese characteristics lies in people’s democracy, and its fundamental approach and epitomization is the system of the People’s Congress. The concept of people’s democracy is concretely and vividly embodied in all links of the whole process of the people being the masters of the country. The people implement democratic elections, democratic consultations, democratic decision-making, democratic management, and democratic supervision in accordance with the law. These five links have expanded the orderly political participation of the people and reflects typically the specific form of democracy in the whole process. There are more or less similarities between the system of the People’s Congress and that of the House of the People implemented in Somalia currently.
Democracy is not Coca-Cola, which tastes the same across the world. The forms of realizing democratic politics are rich and varied, and shall not be constrained to any single model. For example, clans play an important role in Somalia’s democratic politics. From the perspective of the party system, socialist democracy with Chinese characteristics is fully embodied in the system of multi-party cooperation and political consultation under the leadership of the CPC, which is a basic political system entrenched by the Chinese Constitution. It is a great achievement of the CPC in combining the Marxist-Lennist theories of the united front, political parties, and democratic politics with the conditions in China. It is an innovative political system involving political parties, prominent individuals without any party affiliation, people’s organizations, and people from all walks of life and all ethnic groups under the leadership of the CPC. It has played a significant role in founding the PRC and in each historical period of socialist revolution, development and reform.
People of all countries have the right to choose their own development path. “Only by wearing them, should you know whether a pair of shoes fits you or not.” By the same token only the people of a country is entitled to the final say on its own development path. This also explains the important reason why Chinese government firmly supports a Somali democratic process that is truly Somali-owned and Somali-led. We are always open to useful governance experience from other countries, digesting its essence and employing it for our own use on the basis of our own systems. China’s socialist democracy is a whole-process, most representative democracy. It embodies the will of the people, fits the country’s realities, and is endorsed by the people. It has been fully demonstrated in effectively tackling the Covid-19 epidemic and winning the fight against poverty as scheduled. It is undemocratic in itself to label China as “authoritarian” or “dictatorship” simply because China’s democracy takes a different form than that of other countries.
The socialist democratic system with Chinese characteristics is a historical choice. Since the advent of modern times, countless progressives struggled in search of ways to create a better future for China. They pioneered new state and governance systems, and experimented with various solutions such as constitutional monarchy, parliamentary systems, multiparty politics, and presidential government. But all these efforts ended in failure. We shall stay committed to a people-centered approach, ensure the principal status of the people, improve our democratic institutions, diversify our forms of democracy, and establish more democratic channels. We must see to it that the principle of the people as masters of the country is put into practices in China’s political and social activities. Similarly, we are also confident that Somalia will eventually achieve universal suffrage and establish a democratic system that suits its own national conditions.