Central Committee member dismissed
The Communist Party has formally announced the removal of Yu Youjun , a former vice-minister of culture, from the Central Committee.
The decision to dismiss Dr Yu, 55, was endorsed yesterday by the full Central Committee, although the decision was made by the Politburo early last month, Xinhua said.
Xinhua said Dr Yu was given a two-year probationary period on his party membership - indicating that he would not face criminal charges.
The announcement did not spell out his wrongdoings, but earlier reports suggested that he was found guilty by Communist Party investigators of corruption when he was Shenzhen mayor from 2000 to 2003.
After he left his post as Shenzhen mayor, he climbed further up the political ladder by becoming governor of Hunan and Shanxi provinces.
Dr Yu was tipped for further promotion in September last year when he was transferred to the Ministry of Culture as its party secretary and took on the position of vice-minister.
A month later, he became a member of the powerful Central Committee, raising the prospect that he would be groomed for even more significant appointments.
However, he disappeared from public sight early this year and was absent from the annual National People's Congress, sparking speculation that he was under investigation.
Officials were tight-lipped about his case for months. Then his name was removed from the Ministry of Culture's website about a week ago - a sign that the investigation was completed and he would be sacked.
The native of Jiangsu province holds a doctorate in Marxist philosophy from Zhongshan University in Guangdong. He has written extensively on Guangdong and China's reform experiments.
Dr Yu's Central Committee vacancy was filled by Wang Xinxian , party secretary of the China Disabled Persons' Federation, Xinhua said.