I know that in July China will mark the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party. Also, I know that you will be discussing the role of political parties in the governance of developing countries. I think both are very inspiring opportunities and can be a great opportunity to clarify many tailored or natural doubts about how to build the path to success while keeping the people of a country satisfied.
In today’s European civilization, which also influenced the creation of new worlds, a stereotype is rooted, which is explained by the strong conviction that there can be no democracy and happiness for any social community if its organization is not established on the principle of “government and opposition”.
I think that the link between democracy and political parties cannot be considered a priori as positive or negative. Instead, the function of political parties in a democracy must be seen in terms of their contribution to the development of democracy and society.
After the fall of the Berlin Wall, ideological conflicts remained on our continent, therefore, many countries, although completely democratic, are classified as old-fashioned countries which will be lagging behind in development. Many argue that it is possible that a period of better life may gradually emerge for European countries, with the understanding that there is no democracy without government and without opposition.
However, the events of the past year and several months do not really confirm this. The COVID-19 pandemic cannot be called a beacon of hope for Europe given the poor organized response from most European democracies. Organizations that include the most developed countries of Europe in their membership also did not pass the exam. There are a lot of well-founded objections. Over time, the reasons for re-examining the functioning of those states and organizations, which in their response to the challenges of COVID-19 showed failures, have multiplied.
Therefore, the “government-opposition” political formula in itself has not helped these countries and organizations respond satisfactorily to threats and challenges, which I believe has deepened people’s mistrust of the government. regard for power in many countries.
Fortunately, I would like to point out that this was not the case with Serbia, which worked out indigenous solutions thanks to its political experience, and with the help of China and other friendly countries like Russia, it succeeded. to lead by example of how a country can be successful in difficult times. It may be our fate.
I gave the example of Serbia to show that there is no authoritative instruction book in the world on how a country should organize its political life and public sphere, develop its economy and promote its culture. There is no magic formula that works well all over the place in any given society. I believe that anyone who thinks differently is not essentially a Democrat. And democracy in international relations should imply sincere respect for all those who appear as a subject of such relations on the world stage.
How an individual state will regulate and organize its affairs should depend on the exclusive competence of that country and its people. The choice of each nation remains exclusively its internal affair. Those who take all the credit for themselves, preaching to others what is right and what is not, can neither be a beacon nor a moral model. Especially when it is imposed by any means necessary.
Certainly, I do not want to deny the successes of the civilizational course of humanity as a whole, and I believe that every society, for itself, should strive for the highest goals. However, the path to complete freedom of an individual and an individual society as a whole should be paved with wisdom and the constant presence of this vision that countries should achieve. It would be better if this was also present in the mutual relations. I’m not just talking about people, but also about states.
According to many authors, the obvious fundamental functions of one or more political parties are the articulation of interests and the formation of public opinion; nomination and election of political and public office holders; directing and controlling the work of state organs; political education; socialization and information of citizens.
The role of a party is also to discipline the elected representatives of the people. It is first and foremost up to elected officials to protect themselves from greed so as not to give in to pressure from interest groups and individual interests, and to keep promises made during elections.
In many ways, China contributes and helps humanity as a whole. China’s action is greatly appreciated in the many activities in which the world is engaged, especially in the United Nations.
I would like to stress that your behavior, with the realization of President Xi Jinping’s Belt and Road Initiative, has received the full approval of a large number of countries. It is increasingly understood that this is a project that has the well-being of everyone at heart, not just China and the Chinese people. Your understanding and respect for the priorities of the countries with which you work have been increasingly recognized. The most important thing is to continue like this.
The author is the former President of the Republic of Serbia.
Opinions do not necessarily reflect those of China Daily.