Saturday, September 23, 2017, 11:28 (GMT+7)
The birth of Vietnamese revolutionary state and the cultivation and training of cadres and party members according to Ho Chi Minh’s thought

On September 2nd, 1945, on behalf of the provisional government, President Ho Chi Minh read the Declaration of Independence to found the Democratic Republic of Vietnam – a new style of revolutionary state which represented the will and interest of working people and the whole people. The establishment of the revolutionary state has set the requirements for cultivating and training cadres and party members who are capable of meeting the demands. That is a fundamental, regular and urgent task.

“We have to perceive that all Government agencies, from central to village levels, are public servants, who are to shoulder common affairs for people, not to oppress people as what happened under the rule of France and Japan. What benefits people, we have to try our best to fulfill. What does harm to people, we have to try our best to avoid,” said Ho Chi Minh in a letter sent to people’s committees at all levels on October 17th, 1945. He also pointed out that, right from coming into power, several cadres and party members made mistakes, including illegality, bossiness, misappropriation, division, arrogance, and “manner of a mandarin.” Ho Chi Minh requested that each cadre and party member, especially those in high office and great power, had to correct their wrongdoings and try to train themselves in the spirit: “We are not scared of making mistakes, but have to manage to rectify the mistakes once they have been identified. Thus, those who have not committed these wrongdoings should avoid and try to make further progress. Those who have made these blunders should strive to correct. If they did not correct themselves, the Government would not be tolerant.”

In the article titled “How to Win People’s Hearts and Minds” published in the 65th edition of The Cuu Quoc, dated October 12th, 1945, Ho Chi Minh clearly specified a truth: “I realize that there are more complaints than praises for the people’s committees. People have more confidence in the central Government than the local committees… Those committees cannot only win people’s love, but are despised and hated by people… People dislike chairmen and members of the people’s committees because of these public servants’ swagger, bossiness, and imperiousness.” Swagger will eventually lead to lavish lifestyle and isolation from the populace. In “Good Cadres Require Self-Criticism”, published on September 26th, 1945, Ho Chi Minh clearly noted that “you [cadres] either acclaim yourself for being highly knowledgeable and experienced in your jobs, or have no desire for success. Therefore, you are not willing to study and self-criticize to rectify your wrongdoings and overcome your weaknesses. It should be noted that objective situations are evolving constantly. Our guidelines can be correct today, but might be outdated tomorrow. If we do not opportunely review our ideologies and behaviors to remove the outdatedness and wrongdoings, we will definitely fail to keep pace with new developments, fall behind and so forth.” Ho Chi Minh’s instructions not only serve as requirements for cadres and party members in authority to correct their mistakes and wrongdoings and train themselves, but is of long-term scientific importance in working methodologies and styles.

Notably, in “Reforming the Way We Work,” written in October 1947, Ho Chi Minh discussed thoroughly and deeply the party building, especially the issue of cadre development. He believed that cadres represented the root of everything; cadre training was a fundamental task of the Party; and good cadres would facilitate fulfillment of every task. “Success or failure is attributed to cadres’ competence,” said Ho Chi Minh. He clearly put forward 12 criteria for a true revolutionary party, in which the key criterion remained the issues of cadres. He emphasized that the Party was not an organization for cadres and party members to grow rich. It had to fulfill the tasks of national liberation, building a prosperous country, and bringing happiness to people. Party members had to thoroughly grasp revolutionary theory. Theory had to go hand in hand with practice. A true theory was summarized from practice and history. The Party, therefore, had to attach importance to equipping cadres and party members with theory and practice; avoiding underestimating theory and empty theory. Without theory, cadres would have been confused as they were walking with eyes closed. Due to lack of theory, they were unable to examine, consider, and address issues in a clear, correct and sensible manner. Cadres should be trained in theory, politics, profession, and culture to attain higher levels of education. That must be aligned with the selection and use of cadres, and sound cadre policies. In case the Party exercised its leadership over the State, special importance were to be paid to fostering revolutionary ethics; combating individualism, bureaucracy and isolation from people; and rectifying mistakes and shortcomings when training cadres and party members. Ho Chi Minh stressed that every cadre and party member had to strive for and train themselves in 5 leadership qualities, including benevolence, righteousness, wisdom, bravery, and integrity. Revolutionary ethics were new great ones. They did not serve individual fame, but the general interest of the Party, people and humankind. Ho Chi Minh argued that, in our Party, there were people who failed to learn and observe public-spiritedness and selflessness. Consequently, they fell into individualism. Individualism could be regarded as a venomous germ because it gave rise to many dangerous diseases such as laziness, rapacity, arrogance, fame motive, undisciplinedness, narrow-mindedness, confederacy, and so on. It was necessary to eradicate individualism in order to cultivate good cadres.

Training cadres and party members in working styles and working and leadership methodologies constitutes a vital task to deal with bureaucracy and formalism and bring about practical effectiveness in the leadership of party organizations and management of state agencies. A sound leadership methodology is defined, by Ho Chi Minh, as right decision about every issue, correct implementation and control. To ensure sound leadership, it is necessary to resolutely eradicate bureaucracy, narrow-mindedness and imperative. “Everything needs to be learnt from, consulted and explained to people. Cadres and party members have to trust people and involve people in the discussion and finding solutions to problems. If we have shortcomings, we should accept them honestly and publicly. If people find resolutions inappropriate, we should let them make recommendations for rectification. The rectification of our cadres and organizations must be based on people’s opinions,” said Ho Chi Minh.

President Ho Chi Minh’s viewpoints and instructions on the cultivation of cadres and party members, since the inception of the new revolutionary state, are still valuable in theoretical and practical terms. During the renewal process, improving leadership and governance capabilities of the Communist Party of Vietnam (CPV) is an objective requirement, ensuring success in building socialism and firmly safeguarding the socialist Vietnamese Fatherland. That is also inevitably associated with building and perfecting a socialist law-governed state of the people, by the people, for the people, and under the leadership of the CPV. The building of the law-governed state is currently the application of Ho Chi Minh’s thought of building a new style of revolutionary states, put forward by him when the August Revolution in 1945 just succeeded and the Constitution was developed and promulgated in 1946.

Under current conditions, given the requirements of comprehensively speeding up innovation and international integration, the cultivation of cadres and party members in the realms of knowledge and ethics is of vital importance aimed to enhance the Party’s leadership capabilities and fighting power, and the State’s management and governance. Resolutions of the 12th National Party Congress and the 4th Plenum of the Party Central Committee (Tenure XII) on party building straightforwardly judged that a small part of cadres and party members, even leaders at various levels, were degraded in political ideology, morality and lifestyle, and had manifestations of “self-evolution” and “self-transformation.” Consequently, the development and training of cadres are increasingly imperative. The 12th National Party Congress emphasized and put party building in the field of morality on a par with that in political, ideological and organizational terms. Resolution of the 4th Plenum of the Party Central Committee (Tenure XII) clearly pointed out that there remained a number of shortcomings and weaknesses in party building, which undermined the Party’s leading role; hurt people’s sentiment; eroded people’s confidence in the Party; and posed a direct risk to the survival of the Party and regime.

To develop and cultivate cadres and party members to meet the demands of assigned tasks, there is a need to improve the quality and effectiveness of education and training in the Party’s theory and guidelines, and State law. First, it is vital to promote leadership and direction aimed to raise the whole Party’s awareness of the significance, role, importance, and necessity for studying, creatively applying and developing Marxism-Leninism and Ho Chi Minh’s thought. There should be plans to train and improve cadres and party members’ annual compulsory reasoning level, in association with the provision of information and update on new knowledge, suitable to each subject, level, branch, and locality. The studying and following of Ho Chi Minh’s ideology, morality and lifestyle, stipulated in the Politburo’s Directive 05-CT/TW on May 15th, 2016, must be executed strictly and effectively. The education of Ho Chi Minh’s ideology, morality and lifestyle is of significant importance to building and making the Party and political system pure and strong in all fields. Ho Chi Minh’s morality and lifestyle help to throw light on moral standards of cadres and party members in the renewal and development process. Thus, every party organization, governmental organization and union, the armed forces, and each cadre and party member in all working positions have to thoroughly perceive Ho Chi Minh’s lifestyle and overcome formality and lack of action. What makes it important is that the following will enable drastic changes in action and practical work. In the context of building a law-governed socialist state, special importance should be attached to the education, propaganda and study of the Constitution and legal system. Party organizations and their members operate within the frameworks of the Constitution and law defined at Article 4 of the 2013 Constitution. All cadres and party member have to firmly grasp the content, features and operating procedures of the law-governed socialist state of the people, by the people, for the people, and under the leadership of the CPV.

In addition, it is necessary to enhance discipline and rules in the Party and state machinery, inspection and supervision. To make the machinery of the Party and State at all levels truly pure and strong, and cultivate good cadres and party members, it requires enhanced discipline and good management of cadres. To strictly realize the Party’s organizational principles, there must be timely and accurate measures to deal with wrongdoings, ensuring openness, transparency and justice. Party executive committees at all levels give instructions on how to improve the quality of admitting excellent people into the Party while reviewing, screening and removing those with bad conduct from the Party. If party building is regarded as the key issue, cadre work will be the key content of party building and state machinery. Consequently, there is a need to execute well steps of cadre work, including assessment, planning, training, selection, nomination, promotion, rotation, and implementation of cadre policies. Those steps are conducted on the basis of democracy, honesty and openness for the sake of national interest and selection of worthy cadres. Cadres and party members responsible for leadership and management at levels, agencies, organizations, and forces must be periodically inspected, supervised and assessed, and have their authority controlled. These measures help to prevent the abuse of authority and misuse of power for self-interest, corruption and group interest, or creating factions and appointing family members and relatives to leadership and management machinery, resulting in controlling power, undermining the Party and state authority, and losing public approval and prestige.

On grasping Ho Chi Minh’s thought, governments at all levels, branches and party organizations, in the coming time, should pay more attention to the development and training of cadres and party members. They should focus on improving political spirit, responsibility, morality, lifestyle, qualification, knowledge, and organizational capabilities so as to enable the Party and State to accomplish their historic mission to move our country firmly along the road to rapid and sustainable development.

Associate Professor Nguyen Trong Phuc, PhD

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