A report published by a magazine affiliated to the Supreme People's Procuratorate that exposes corruption in the sports administration departments of various levels has gained wide attention on the social media. China Youth Daily commented on Tuesday:
The report offers some detailed depictions of the underhand dealings that go on in sports. Given the magazine's background, the article's popularity shows people have high expectations of the judicial authorities digging into the sports administrations to root out corruption.
The corruption in the administration of sports originates from the concentration of power in the department heads at various levels. If this pyramid power structure is not reformed, the cat-and-mouse anti-graft campaign will always result in the imprisonment of problematic officials. However, that is treating the symptoms rather than the disease.
It is estimated the sports industry will be worth about 3 trillion yuan ($454 billion) in China in 2020. But the whole administrative system and its supervision mechanism have failed to keep pace with the commercialization of sports and remained largely unchanged for decades. Some practices are even the same as they were during the planned economy era half a century ago, providing an independent kingdom for some corrupt officials to fatten their own pockets. An overhaul of the sports system is long overdue, it should have been done in the late 1970s when reform and opening-up were carried out in other sectors.
But better late than never.