Hanoi appoints new chairman after dismissing scandalous predecessor

By Vo Hai   July 22, 2022 | 02:43 am PT
Hanoi appoints new chairman after dismissing scandalous predecessor
Tran Sy Thanh is now the new chairman of Hanoi. Photo by VnExpress/Giang Huy
Tran Sy Thanh, auditor general of State Audit Office, was voted new chairman of Hanoi for the 2021-2026 term at a Hanoi legislators' meeting Friday.

Thanh, 51, will succeed Chu Ngoc Anh, who had been sacked during a Covid-19 test kit scandal.

The Politburo, the highest body of the Communist Party of Vietnam, appointed Thanh as deputy secretary of Hanoi Party Committee for the 2020-2025 period on July 15.

Capital Hanoi is home to more than eight million people.

Thanh has held several senior positions at the Ministry of Finance, including deputy office head, office head and deputy director of Vietnam State Treasury.

Since 2008, he has been deputy chairman of Dak Lak Province, Party secretary of Bac Giang Province, Party secretary of Lang Son Province and deputy head of the Communist Party's Central Inspection Commission.

In 2017, he became deputy head of the Central Economic Commission and chairman of the PetroVietnam board. In 2020, he was appointed deputy head of the National Assembly Office. He has been auditor general of State Audit Office since April 2021.

Thanh became the new Hanoi chairman 45 days after former leader Anh was dismissed from his position and arrested for mismanagement involving Covid-19 test kit fraud, which he committed while working as the minister of science and technology from April 2016 to September 2020.

Anh was arrested hours after the dismissal.

The Party's Central Inspection Committee had in May proposed the Politburo to consider disciplinary action against the Party Committee of the Ministry of Science and Technology in 2016-2021, the Party Committee of the Ministry of Health during that period, Hanoi chairman Anh and health minister Nguyen Thanh Long.

The committee had said in March the Party Committee and officials of the health and science ministries in the 2016-2021 term had been negligent in their management, allowing violations at the ministries and their units regarding the approval, management and sale of Covid-19 test kits.

Phan Quoc Viet, general director of Viet A, admitted in January he had inflated the price of a Covid-19 test kit by 45 percent and sent around VND800 billion ($35.2 million) in "bonuses" to company partners. Viet said he had bribed certain individuals in this regard.

Several officials including high-ranking military generals and directors of provincial branches of the Center for Diseases Control have been arrested or placed under criminal investigation for their involvement in the case.

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