Vietnam names public security minister To Lam new president

By Staff reporters   May 21, 2024 | 06:06 pm PT
General To Lam has become Vietnam's new president following a vote by the National Assembly on Wednesday morning.

In a secret ballot, 472 of 473 NA deputies voted to approve the nomination.

At the swearing-in ceremony, Lam said the position is a big honor and responsibility, as well as a great opportunity for him to contribute to the country and serve the people.

"I pledge to seriously and comprehensively fulfill my duties and rights as the president per the Constitution; conduct my duties on internal, external, defense and security affairs of the country; and, along with the Party, the people, the army and other organizations in the political system, utilize the spirit of independence and autonomy to strive to successfully achieve initiatives set out by the Party," he said.

General To Lam is sworn in as Vietnams state president, May 22, 2024. Photo by Hoang Phong

General To Lam is sworn in as Vietnam's state president, May 22, 2024. Photo by Hoang Phong

The Central Party Committee last Saturday recommended Lam, a Politburo member and Minister of Public Security, for the NA to elect as president.

Lam, 67, is a native of Van Giang District in the northern Hung Yen Province.

He is a member of the Party Central Committee for the 11th, 12th, and 13th terms (from January 2011 until now); a member of the Politburo for the 12th and 13th terms (from January 2016 until now); and a National Assembly delegate for the 14th and 15th tenures.

He began his career at the Directorate for Political Protection I, then served as Deputy Director of Political Protection I and Director of Political Protection III, General Department of Security.

He was assigned by the prime minister in 2009 to become the head of the Security Department 1.

He became the deputy public security minister in August 2010, then the public security minister in April 2016.

He is also the current deputy head of the Central Steering Committee on fighting corruption, chaired by General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong.

On March 20, the Central Party Committee granted Vo Van Thuong’s request to step down from his positions as president, member of the Politburo, member of the Central Party Committee, and chairman of the National Defense and Security Council. The National Assembly officially voted for him to step down the next day.

Following Thuong's exit from the position, Vice President Vo Thi Anh Xuan became the acting president.

In accordance with the Constitution, the Vietnamese president represents the country on both internal and external affairs. They are able to announce the Constitution and the laws; request the National Assembly to vote for or dismiss a vice president or a prime minister; as well as assigning and dismissing a deputy PM, ministers and other members of the government per resolutions by the National Assembly.

A president can also request the National Assembly to vote for or dismiss the heads of the Supreme People’s Court, the Supreme People’s Procuracy; and decide on amnesty.

Vietnam's state president is also the chairman of the National Defense and Security Council, is able to change the ranks of certain military personnel, as well as assign and dismiss the head of the Political Affairs General Department of the People’s Army.

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