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Senior Party officials face disciplinary action for exam fraud

By Viet Tuan   December 9, 2019 | 06:25 am PT
Senior Party officials face disciplinary action for exam fraud
Trieu Tai Vinh, Deputy Head of the Central Economic Committee and former Party Secretary of Ha Giang Province. Photo by VnExpress/Ngoc Thang.
The Party Central Inspection Committee has recommended disciplinary action against a former Party secretary of Ha Giang Province over last year’s massive exam fraud.

The inspection committee Monday called for disciplinary action against Trieu Tai Vinh, a member of the Party Central Committee, Deputy Head of the Central Economic Commission and former Party Secretary of the northern Ha Giang Province, for violations in the conduct of the 2017-2018 national high school exam.

It also called for disciplinary action against Nguyen Van Son, Deputy Party Secretary of Ha Giang and Chairman of Ha Giang People’s Committee.

The scandal, which covered the three northern provinces of Ha Giang, Hoa Binh and Son La, has already seen numerous officials arrested or disciplined for their involvement.

Last month, five senior education officials in Ha Giang were sentenced to jail for one to eight-year terms for abusing their power for personal gains, ranging from one to eight-year jail terms. Nguyen Thanh Hoai, former head of the Testing and Quality Assurance unit under Ha Giang's Education Department, received the longest jail term of eight years.

Investigations revealed that over 200 students taking their exams in the three provinces had their results altered. Dozens of students from top universities have since been expelled or have voluntarily dropped out after their scores were corrected.

Family members of both Vinh and Son had used their connections to adjust the national exam scores of some examinees, including Vinh’s daughter, the inspection committee said.

In October, Vinh’s sister Trieu Thi Giang, deputy head of the external economic relations division of Ha Giang's Department of Planning and Investment, was reprimanded by the provincial Party Inspection Committee for pulling strings to raise the score of Vinh’s daughter.

Vinh's wife, Pham Thi Ha, Deputy Director of Ha Giang's Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, was warned by the inspection committee to "thoroughly review and learn from her experience" for letting her sister-in-law meddle in the conduct of the examination.

Last July, in response to his daughter's passing the national high school exam, Vinh said: "At first, when I heard my daughter earned a very high score, I thought she will go to university this year. After learning her score was altered, I asked her about it and felt a bit sad. How her score was altered, that I don’t know."

In September 2016, information about several family members of Vinh holding senior positions in Ha Giang Province was widely shared on social media.

In response to the incident, Vinh told VnExpress that "the appointment process complies with the provisions of the Party and the state," adding that he "is not happy about the fact that my family members have been elected and appointed to be seniors".

The 51-year-old official, who belongs to the Dao ethnic minority group, is a native of Ha Giang. He was appointed to be Deputy Head of the Central Economic Committee in July this year.

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