Some new points on Party building in the documents of the 13th Party Congress and recommendations

Socialism construction reality Saturday, 06:41 24-02-2024
Abstract: The 13th Party Congress approved important documents, in which Party building was mentioned as a “key task” with new highlights. The article analyzes some new points on Party building in these documents and proposes some solutions in order to provide a scientific basis for implementation of the 13th Party Congress policy on Party building in the near future.

1. The Party building issues mentioned in the Documents of the 13th Party Congress

The issue of Party building is mentioned in all documents, but most concentrated in the Political Report, a core report and the Summary Report on Party building and the implementation of the Party's Charter for the 12th Congress, direction and tasks of Party building work for the 13th National Congress which contributes to clarifying, specifying, enriching and deepening the Political Report.

The Political Report of the 13th Congress has 15 major sections, in which Party building is mentioned in Sections I, XIV, and XV. In Section I titled “The results of the implementation of the 12th Party Congress’s Resolution and the country's fortune after 35 years of renovation”, the Report assessed the advantages, limitations, disadvantages and causes of Party building work during the term of the 12th Party Congress and affirmed: “The Party and political system’s building and rectification work has been promoted comprehensively, synchronously, drastically and remarkably efficient(1). On the basis of assessing the country's situation after 35 years of renovation, particularly after five years of implementing the 12th Party Congress’s Resolution, the Congress withdrew five lessons, of which the first lesson is about Party building and rectification: “The work of Party building and rectification must be implemented drastically, comprehensively, synchronously and regularly in terms of politics, ideology, morality, organization and personnel”(2).

In Section XIV with the title “Building and rectifying a transparent and strong Party, improving the Party's leadership and ruling capacity”, the Report identifies the direction of Party building work in the 13th Congress term as follows: “In the coming years, special attention must be paid to and further promoting the building and rectification of the Party comprehensively in terms of politics, ideology, morality, organization and personnel”(3). At the same time, it proposed ten major tasks and solutions, comprehensively covering all aspects of Party building work to implement in the 13th Congress term.

In Section XV titled “Key tasks and strategic breakthroughs for the 13th Party Congress", the Report has identified six key tasks to be focused, of which the first one is on Party building and rectification.

The Summary Report on the Party building work of the 12th Party’s Congress and the tasks and solutions for the 13th Congress has comprehensively and deeply assessed the results of Party building and rectification in the 12th Congress; specified the results achieved; limitations, shortcomings, causes and lessons learned. On that basis, the Report specifically stated ten tasks and solutions, including: (1) Strengthening the Party building work in term of politics; (2) Attaching importance to the Party building in terms of ideology; (3) Focusing on the Party building in term of morality; (4) Continuing to renovate and complete the organizational structure and improve the operational efficiency of the political system; (5) Consolidating and improving the quality of grassroots Party organizations and Party members; (6) Strengthening Party building in terms of personnel at all levels, especially at the strategic levels; (7) Strongly renovating, improving the effectiveness and efficiency of Party inspection, supervision and discipline; (8) Further tightening the close relationship between the Party and the people, relying on the people to build the Party; (9) Resolutely and persistently fighting against corruption and wastefulness; (10) Continuing to innovate the Party's leadership method in the new conditions. Notably, the Report has set out three key tasks and three strategic breakthroughs in the Party building work.

The submission of thematic reports on Party building work as official documents to the Congress is a special case that highlighted and consistently affirmed the role, position and importance of present Party building work, demonstrating the development of awareness of the importance, goals and orientation of the key tasks of Party building work, associated with high requirements on the Party’s leadership, ruling capacity and combating strength building in the new situation and to realize the goal of rapid and sustainable country development.

2. Some new points on Party building work in the 13th Party Congress

First and foremost, it is necessary to affirm that the Party's viewpoints and policies on Party building work are of particularly important contents, closely related and inseparable to the realization of the country development goals, views and principles in general, along with all other aspects of work set out by the Party in the 13th Congress’s Documents. Evidently, the Party has determined to “Strengthen the construction and rectification of the Party and the political system to be transparent and strong”(4) as the first among five elements of the Congress's theme, also the first among six key tasks in the next term. Clearly, the Documents of the Congress affirm the key position, role, and special importance of Party building and rectification in the cause of national construction, development and defense in the new period.

The 13th Party Congress’s Documents has many contents that demonstrate new awareness and guidelines on Party building and rectification, in which a number of issues had been previously identified by the Party, but have been upgraded to a new level to become the Congress’s views and policies, such as on Party building in terms of morality, anti-corruption issues, and so on. Some were identified as a fundamental issue of the Party building work; some issues were identified for the first time in the Document of the Congress, demonstrating the Party's thinking breakthrough of the Party building work. Followings are some new views, guidelines or new points on Party building work that were mentioned in the Documents of the 13th Party Congress:

(i) Building and rectifying the Party in sync with building a clean and strong political system. This viewpoint has been included in the theme of the Congress, demonstrating the importance of attaching Party building to building a strong political system, especially building a socialist rule of law state which is of the people, by the people and for the people.

(ii). Comprehensively building the Party in five aspects: politics, ideology, morality, organization and personnel. Those five aspects/elements had been mentioned separately in previous resolutions, but this is the first time that our Party affirmed that Party building must be comprised of five aspects. Building the Party in terms of politics, ideology and organization was throughout the Party’s orientation from the 3rd to the 11th Party Congress (2011). Faced with the situation that  “A large number of cadres and Party members, including those holding leadership and managerial positions, some high-ranking cadres, have deteriorated in political ideology and morality, lifestyle with different manifestations”(5), in order to build a clean, strong, truly moral and civilized Party, the 12th Congress decided to separate the morality content from the ideology aspect and upgraded it on a par with strategic tasks and Party building in terms of politics, ideology and organization. Reality has shown that cadre work plays an increasingly important role and is a decisive factor in the success or failure of the revolution; cadre work is the “pivotal” stage of the political system and Party building. Therefore, the 13th Congress decided to separate the cadre content from Party building in terms of organization, to become one of five aspects of the Party building work.

(iii) Party building with “four steadfastness” including: steadfast to applying and creatively developing Marxism-Leninism and Ho Chi Minh Thought; steadfast to the goal of national independence and socialism; steadfast to the renovation line for the sake of well-being people, strong country, democracy, justice, and civilization, and steadfast to the principles on the Party’s organization and operation. Emphasizing the “four steadfastness” affirms the consistent view that it is always necessary to firmly defend the ideological foundation, and consistent with the goals and ideology of the Party. This is a matter of principle, “no one is allowed to be shaky or wavering”. In particular, compared with the 12th Congress, the 13th Congress added the content of “persisting on the principles of Party building” which affirms the rigor and unity of the will and actions of the Party. It also helps overcome the situation that a part of cadres and Party members do not abide the Party's organizational principles, violate the principle of democratic centralism, causing defects and mistakes in leadership and governance.

(iv) Completing the theory on the national renewal line. In the previous congresses, the Party set out the task of researching and perfecting the theory of socialism and the way to socialism in Vietnam. The 13th Congress set out requirements for research and practical summaries to perfect the theory of the renewal, on socialism and the path to socialism in Vietnam. This is a new development in the Party's awareness and is a major policy and an important issue because it is related to the development of the Party's ideological foundation. Theoretical research work must focus on explaining and clarifying to provide solid scientific and practical arguments for supplementing and developing the Party's ideological foundation in the new period.

(v) Building the Party in terms of morality as a mode of the Party’s existence and operation. Party building in morality is not a new issue, but the 13th Congress has approached with a new mindset, considering it as the Party's mode of operation.

(vi) Regarding renovating, perfecting the organizational apparatus and improving the operational efficiency of the political system, there are many new contents such as ensuring the synchronization and connection between the Party's regulations and the State's laws, perfecting the Party apparatus by branches and sectors; arrangement of administrative units; job placement, and such.

(vii) Regarding Party building in terms of personnel, many new guidelines were mentioned, such as renewing the evaluation mechanism; the chiefs introducing the deputy chiefs; exams to recruit the chiefs, and so on. In the personnel work, for the first time, the Party proposed key tasks and breakthrough solutions, including a mechanism to encourage and protect virtuous and talented people who dare to think, dare to do, dare to break through, dare to innovate for the common good

(viii) Regarding inspection and supervision, the 13th Congress’s Documents emphasize the coordination mechanism between checking and supervision with inspection, audit and investigation to ensure that there is no overlapping or vacant zones or obstruction between these activities.

(ix) The Documents sets out the policy of resolutely and persistently fighting against corruption and wastefulness with the motto that cadres, Party members, civil servants and public employees do not want to corrupt, cannot corrupt, and do not need to corrupt and dare not corrupt.

(x) The document emphasizes the task of further tightening the close relationship between the Party and the people, relying on the people to build the Party, in which special attention is paid to building a mechanism for the people to participate in Party building. The document also emphasizes the need to continue to perfect, concretize, and well implement the mechanism “the Party leads, the State governs, the people are masters” and the mechanism to implement the policy that people know, people discuss, people execute, people check, people supervise and people benefit”. The input of new content “people benefit” represents a realistic concretization of the view that the people are the beneficiary and the center of the country's renewal process.

(xi) The Party's policy of reforming its ruling method: The leadership method is affirmed in the Party Platform and has been concretized in many documents. However, emphasizing the ruling method and renewing the Party's ruling method is a new feature of the Documents, demonstrating a deeper grasp of Ho Chi Minh Thought as well as the Party’s absorption of the quintessence of political thought in the modern world.

(xii). Three key tasks and three breakthrough solutions set by the Party for the first time in the Congress’s Documents: Three key tasks include: (1) Effectively preventing and repelling the deterioration of political ideology, morality, lifestyle, internal “self-evolution” and “self-transformation” manifestations, associated with promoting learning and following Ho Chi Minh's thought, morality and style; (2) Strongly renewing and improving the quality and efficiency of personnel work; focusing on building a contingent of cadres at all levels, especially at the strategic level, and leaders who are qualified, capable and reputable, on par with their duties; (3) Continuing to renovate, consolidate and perfect the organizational apparatus of the lean political system, improving the effectiveness and efficiency of operations. Three strategic breakthroughs are institutions, personnel and anti-corruption, namely (1) Continuing to improve institutions on Party and political system building, especially in personnel and organization; (2) Developing a mechanism to create an environment and conditions that facilitate and promote innovation, and protect cadres and Party members who are dynamic, creative, dare to think, dare to speak, dare to do, dare to innovate, dare to endure responsibility for the common good; (3) Strengthening the fight against corruption and negativity; tightening discipline; promoting decentralization along with strengthening inspection, supervision and strict control of power. It can be affirmed that, along with the 10 contents of the Party building, the “three key tasks” and “three strategic breakthroughs” are really outstanding new points, and represent the core content of the innovative mindset. It has just demonstrated a new way of doing in the Party building and rectification in the new period.

3. Some recommendations to realize the 13th Party Congress’s Resolution

It is recommended to carry out the following issues in order to realize the policies of the 13th Party Congress on Party building:

Firstly, cadres, Party members and the masses must thoroughly grasp the viewpoints, guidelines, tasks and solutions on Party building in the Congress’s Documents. Shortly after the Congress, the Party Central Committee, the Politburo and the Secretariat closely directed the research, study, understanding, communication and implementation of the 13th Congress’s Resolution. Directive No. 01-CT/TW, dated March 9, 2021 by the Politburo clearly states: “Researching, studying, mastering, communicating and implementing the Resolution of the 13th Party Congress is a regular work which must be carried out in a serious, methodical and scientific manner throughout the term”(6). Regarding the Party building work in particular, Party committees at all levels and organizations should develop specific plans and organize thoroughly to make cadres and Party members deeply aware of the content and importance of the views and policies, new thesis on Party building demonstrated in the 13th Congress’s Documents. At the same time, it is necessary to strengthen communication in various forms to help the masses understand these new guidelines. In particular, mastering the contents of the 13th Party Congress’s Documents should be associated with the implementation of resolutions and directives of the Central Committee, the Politburo and the Secretariat on Party building and political system to create awareness unity and pervasiveness in social life.

Second, concretizing the contents of the Congress's resolution, resolutions and conclusions of the Party Central Committee, the Politburo and the Secretariat on Party building work into specific action plans that are suitable with functions, tasks and characteristics of each Party organization, agency, unit and locality. Shortly after the 13th Party Congress, the Party Central Committee and the Politburo have issued four important documents related to Party building, namely: Conclusion No. 21-KL/TW signed by General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong on accelerating the building and rectification of the Party and the political system; resolutely preventing, repelling and strictly handling cadres and Party members who degraded in political ideology, morality and lifestyle, with manifestations of “self-evolution”, “self-transformation”; Conclusion No. 14-KL/TW dated September 22, 2021 by the Politburo on the policy of encouraging and protecting dynamic and creative cadres for the common good; Regulation No. 37-QD/TW dated October 25, 2021 of the Central Committee on what Party members are not allowed to do; Regulation No. 41-QD/TW dated November 3, 2021 of the Politburo on the dismissal and resignation of cadres. Those are steps to concretize the 13th Congress’s Resolutions, expressing the Party’s determination to make fundamental changes in the Party and political system building and rectification work in the coming time. However, in realization of the Party’s resolutions, the Party’s organizations should continue to concretize the action plans to ensure effectiveness. The concretization must stick to the Party’s viewpoints and policies, and be suitable with specific functions, responsibilities and characteristics of the Party’s organizations, promoting creativity.

Thirdly, institutionalizing the views of the 13th Congress and the resolutions, conclusions, and instructions of the Politburo and the Secretariat on Party building and rectification into laws. The institutionalization of the Party's viewpoints and policies has a very important role in the building and rectification of the Party and the political system. Indeed, this contributes to creating synchronization and connection between Party’s policies and State’s laws. Consequently, it creates a unified legal framework for synchronous implementation in the whole political system, and at the same time, a legal basis for handling violations. When institutionalizing the Party's viewpoints and policies on building and rectifying the Party, it is necessary to review legal provisions to ensure uniformity and unity, and to focus on practical conditions to make it feasible.

Fourthly, comprehensively and systematically implementation of Party building and rectification, being focused and detailed in specific subjects. In fact, the implementation of the Resolution is still a weak point, so it is necessary to focus resources and innovate the implementation method so that the Party's resolutions really come to life. The 13th Party Congress specified ten tasks of which three key tasks and three breakthrough solutions that need to focus on implementation of the Party building work. The Conclusion No. 21-KL/TW dated October 25, 2021 of the 4th Plenum of the 13th Party Central Committee, comprehensively mentioned the task of “promoting the building and rectification of the Party and political system”, at the same time, emphasized the focus of “resolutely preventing, repelling, and strictly handling cadres and Party members who degrade in political ideology, morality and lifestyle, with the manifestations of “self-evolution”, “self-transformation”. Therefore, the organization and implementation of the Party-building viewpoints and policies of the 13th Party Congress on the one hand must ensure the comprehensiveness and synchronization of all aspects of work; on the other hand, stick to the focus to ensure efficiency. Besides, during the implementation process, it is necessary to pay attention to clarify the roles and responsibilities of all participants, particularly of the leader.

Fifth, regularly inspecting and supervising the implementation of the Resolution, periodically reviewing and summarizing lessons learned and perfecting the policy on Party building. Party building is a key task, very important, decisive to the survival of the Party and the regime, so it requires very scientific, methodical and careful implementation. This is also an error-prone field, therefore it is necessary to regularly check and monitor the implementation to promptly detect and correct deviations and handle mistakes. In addition, it is necessary to periodically review and summarize to draw experience, replicate good models, effective ways of doing things as well as promptly detect problems arising in practice, thereby focusing on research to continue to perfect the guidelines and solutions on Party building./.

 (1), (2), (3), (4) Communist Party of Vietnam (2021), Documents of the 13th Congress, National Political and Truth Publishing House, Hanoi, Vol.1, p.17,95,180.5.

(5) Communist Party of Vietnam (2012), Document of the 4th Conference of the Central Executive Committee tenure eleven, National Political and Truth Publishing House, Hanoi, p.22.

(6) Directive 01-CT/TW dated March 9, 2021 of the Politburo on researching, learning, mastering, propagating and implementing the Resolution of the 13th Party Congress, https://tulieuvankien.dangcongsan.vn/he-thong-van-ban/van-ban-cua-dang/chi-thi-01-cttw-ngay-932021-cua-bo-chinh-tri-ve-viec- Nghien-cuu-hoc-tap-quan-triet-tuyen-truyen-va-trien-khai-thuc-hien-ghi-7242 (accessed on 9.01.2022).


Source: Journal of Political Theory and Communication (English), Issue 5/2023

Le Van Loi

Prof. Dr., Deputy Director, Ho Chi Minh National Academy of Politics

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