|Chinese President Xi Jinping and other leaders meet with winners and nominees of the 4th selection of the "national moral models" in Beijing, capital of China, Sept. 26, 2013. (Xinhua/Ju Peng)
BEIJING, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- President Xi Jinping on Thursday called for promotion of social ethics and traditional virtues among Chinese people.
Xi made the remarks when meeting with China's ethics role-models and nominees following a vote nationwide.
A total of 54 national ethics models were selected this year based on hundreds of millions of votes.
"These winners are excellent representatives of the many beautiful people who have emerged from our long-term campaign to boost ethics and our country's traditional virtues," Xi said.
"Your noble moral characters have warmed people's hearts, moved the nation and set an example for the whole of society," Xi said.
Ranging from company managers to ordinary villagers, the 54 have been recognized for diligence at work, giving help, caring for the elderly or upholding justice and honesty -- in many cases, at the cost of their own interests.
Xi especially introduced Gong Quanzhen, the nonagenarian wife of a late general who was among the leading cadres who helped found the People's Republic of China.
Xi expressed his respect for Gong who went together with her husband to his rural hometown and devoted her life to teaching youngsters and helping locals in the mountainous region while living a frugal life herself.
"The spirit of hard struggle should be passed down generation by generation," Xi said.
Xi called for social and professional ethics as well as family and individual virtues, stressing basic values such as patriotism, honesty and friendliness.
At Thursday's symposium , Liu Yunshan, a member of the Standing Committee of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, called for a campaign to learn from these role-models.
"People should be guided by basic ethics, starting with their surroundings and doing righteous deeds in their life and work," Liu said.
According to Liu, CPC members and officials should stick to these good values in their political work and their efforts to take care of the people.