Ahead of the fourth anniversary commemorating the appointment of Kim Jong Un as the chairman of North Korea’s communist party on May 9, the country held question and answer-based contests among members of North Korean party and labor organizations, Daily NK learned on May 6. 

North Korean authorities reportedly stated that these lessons would open the way to building a “strong socialist country” with the entirety of the party, nation and people firmly united, according to a Daily NK source in North Hamgyong Province.

Kim Jong Un was appointed the chairman of the country’s communist party, the Workers’ Party of Korea (WPK), on May 9, 2016, during the first party congress the country had held in 36 years. 

North Korean authorities have been conducting these contests annually to promote loyalty toward Kim. This year, materials for the contest were reportedly distributed on Apr. 29. 

The contest-related materials reportedly emphasized that the entire party, military and people must “heighten their loyalty” toward the party to ensure that the 75th anniversary of the foundation of the WPK (on Oct. 10) becomes an opportunity for all party members to strengthen their loyalty toward the party.

The materials also stressed that Kim Jong Un is an “embodiment” of the “greatness” of past Suryong (“Great Leader”; refers to Kim Jong Il and Kim Il Sung) and that there needs to be a greater focus on “systematically” learning about Kim’s greatness. 

“Party-related organizations required all their members to take notes and memorize the information covered in daily morning sessions focused on preparing for the contests,” a source in South Hamgyong Province told Daily NK on May 6. 

“There are both local and provincial Q&A competitions,” he continued, adding, “Factories, businesses, and female organizations, such as the Socialist Women’s Union of Korea, have contributed to the ‘learning craze’ by selecting their contestants and giving them time to memorize the material.”

*Translated by Jason Bartlett

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Jong So Yong is one of Daily NK's freelance reporters. Questions about her articles can be directed to dailynkenglish@uni-media.net.