Senior official suspended in graft inquiry
Shandong Deputy Governor Huang Sheng has been put under investigation for a 'disciplinary violation', state media reported yesterday.
It is the latest high-profile case involving senior provincial officials on the mainland.
The Xinhua website reported that the Communist Party's organisation department - which controls the party's personnel matters - said Huang had been put under shuanggui, a form of incommunicado detention imposed on party members being investigated for corruption.
The report quoted sources from the party's anti-corruption watchdog, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, but did not detail the violations Huang is alleged to have committed.
Calls to Huang and his secretary in the Sichuan provincial government office went unanswered yesterday. A staff member at the province's party publicity office refused to comment on the case.
It remains unclear whether Huang has been sacked, but his official profile and all related reports were removed from the provincial government's website yesterday afternoon, just a few hours after Xinhua reported that he was being investigated.
Huang's last public appearance was at a meeting between Shan Jixiang, director of the Administration of Cultural Heritage and Shandong Governor Jiang Daming on Wednesday of last week. He was in charge of cultural issues in the province.
Huang, 57, is the second deputy governor to be placed under shuanggui in two months. In late September, Sichuan Deputy Governor Li Chengyun was reported to have been sacked and put under investigation for alleged corruption and involvement with a female Taiwanese spy. He was in charge of Sichuan's Office of Scientific and Technological Industry of National Defence, a sensitive department which, according to reports, the authorities fear could have been penetrated by the alleged spy.
In his capacity as a deputy governor, Huang was responsible for education, nationality and religion, culture, health and birth control, broadcasting, sport, press and publications as well as food and drug supervision, making him the most high-profile of the province's eight deputies.
A native of Weihai, Shandong, he joined the People's Liberation Army when he was 18 and became a surveyor. In 1979, he entered the province's Qufu Normal College to study history and was elected chairman of the student union.
He began his political career in 1984, becoming a secretary of the provincial government's party commission office. He was promoted to acting deputy party head of Dezhou 10 years later, paving the way for him to become the city's mayor two years later.
Huang was made one of the province's deputy governors in 2007 after serving as the party head of Dezhou for six years.
China's ranking, out of 179 countries, in Transparency International's Corruption Index for 2010