MOSCOW, October 7 (RIA Novosti) - The Chinese government has cleared 162,629 phantom workers from its payroll since a national anti-corruption campaign was launched by President Xi Jinping in 2012, Bloomberg reported Tuesday.
"This would be an important step towards making China a fairer place rather than having people with power being able to take money out of the system and put in their own pockets," David Zweig, a professor of political science at Hong Kong University of Science and Technology was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
Apart from phantom employees, the government has also removed 114,418 government vehicles, according to Bloomberg. Approximately 55,000 workers from the Hebei province were still getting paid after leaving their employment positions along with over 28,000 in the Sichuan province and 15,000 ghost employees in the Henan province.
The efforts are part of the Chinese president's campaign launched to "rectify" the Chinese government from ongoing financial corruption and bureaucracy.
The president's anti-corruption campaign which pledges to target both "tigers and flies" has punished over 480 official on corruption charges since November 2012. Over 182,000 party officials at various levels have been investigated. The campaign has arrested 32 leaders ranked vice minister or above out of approximately 5,000 Chinese officials fitting that category. The four largest corruption cases tackled by the campaign involve former Communist Party of China (CPC) Secretary of Chongqing, Bo Xilai, former politician and senior bureaucrat of the Ministry of Railways of the People's republic of China, Liu Zhijun, former member of the CPC Politburo, Xu Caihou, and retired leader of the CPC, Zhou Yongkang.