Dissatisfied with unreasonable dismissal of labor arbitration rejected former lecturer of Tsinghua University Wu Qiang sued the university

Wu Qiang, a Beijing-based political scientist who studied the Occupy movement in Hong Kong, received written notice of his termination earlier this year, six years after his dismissal from the university. Last week, Wu filed a lawsuit against Tsinghua University for failure to comply with his contract, seeking compensation for unpaid wages and benefits.

Wu Qiang, a former lecturer in the political science department at Tsinghua University in Beijing, was dismissed by the university after conducting an academic investigation into the “Occupy Central Movement” in Hong Kong in 2014. About six years later, Wu received a formal notice of termination earlier this year and was banned from entering Tsinghua’s campus. In response, Wu filed an arbitration application with the Beijing Haidian District Labor Dispute Arbitration Commission, which was recently rejected.

In an interview with Radio Free Asia on Monday, Wu said he filed a lawsuit against Tsinghua University last week, demanding that the university pay him back his salary and social security payments for the past six years of suspension and reinstate him to his teaching and research job. He said.

“Tsinghua University suspended me in 2015, on trumped-up charges and without any reliable academic evaluation. I also never received any formal notice. This situation lasted for six years, which in a sense gave me more freedom to do research at Tsinghua, to continue doing research on authoritarian politics in China and on social movements.”

It was not until this year that the university expelled Wu Qiang from campus, took back the housing assigned to him, and sent him a written notice of termination. Wu Qiang sought compensation from Tsinghua University for his related losses through the Labor Arbitration Commission. Wu Qiang stated.

“In mainland China, personnel employment contracts are theoretically governed by the Labor Law, but even though I am employed as a career establishment staff member, this protection is almost nil in terms of labor rights protection.”

Wu Qiang: I believe that China is still governed by the rule of law and there is still justice

Wu Qiang, 51, a PhD in political science from the University of Duisburg-Essen in Germany, was hired at the end of 2009 by the Department of Political Science at Tsinghua University’s Faculty of Social Sciences, where he is said to be one of the first teachers to offer a course on social movement theory at the university. His actions were opposed by the university, and he was followed and warned by university officials during each of his “field investigations” (field research). After the outbreak of the “Occupy Central Movement” in Hong Kong, Wu Qiang attempted to conduct research in Hong Kong, but was confined and dismissed by university officials.

Wu Qiang said, “This phenomenon is common in Chinese universities, where someone has political problems, and political review has become the biggest bottleneck for academic development. The implementation also caused all kinds of persecution against me for this reason, until now.”

Wu Qiang said that the arbitrator ignored the facts and evidence, avoided the substantive issues and rejected the application for arbitration on the grounds that it was “beyond the statute of limitations. He has filed a lawsuit against Tsinghua University in the Beijing Haidian District Court.

“I believe that China is still governed by the rule of law and there is still hope for justice. We are even very weak, China’s civil rights and the very weak Chinese civil society rely on the hope.”

Wu Qiang speculates that this time the judicial process will be long and he will appoint a lawyer who is good at filing labor dispute lawsuits to defend his legal rights.