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  • Dec 18, 2014
  • Updated: 3:36pm

Peng Liyuan

Peng Liyuan is a popular Chinese folk music and opera singer and the wife of Chinese president, Xi Jinping. A native of Yuncheng County, Shandong, Peng was a finalist at the First National TV Chinese Vocal Contest and is best known for works including People from Our Village and On the Plains of Hope.


China's first lady gives marching orders to military perk

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 27 February, 2013, 11:30pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 28 February, 2013, 10:53am

China’s de facto first lady, famed military singer Peng Liyuan, seems to have gone out of her way to keep a low profile since her husband Xi Jinping was anointed as the Communist Party’s top leader at its 18th National Congress last November.

But as Xi pushes forward a high-profile campaign to rid the Party and military ranks of corruption and waste, Peng found herself in the news again as a model Party member more than ready to answer her husband’s marching orders.

Cai Xiaoxin, a military researcher who has a verified real-name account on China’s social media platform Weibo, wrote on Wednesday that Peng had voluntarily given a flat she owned back to her military unit. According to Cai, the flat was in a military compound in west Beijing, that had been awarded to Peng many years ago.

Free or heavily-subsidised housing is among the most coveted perks Party, government and military officials can receive, especially amid soaring property prices across the country in recent years.

“She sets a good example in answering Chairman Xi’s orders to tighten up military discipline and fight against corrupt practices,” Cai wrote, referring to Xi’s position as the head of the Central Military Commission.

She sets a good example in answering Chairman Xi’s orders to tighten up military discipline and fight against corrupt practices

Ironically, Cai's post disappeared from his Weibo page hours after it was published. The original post did not give more details about Peng’s generous gesture, and Cai has yet to reply to a request sent to him via Weibo for an interview. 

Peng, 51, has been a household name in China since the early 1980s, a soprano well loved for her lusty rendering of Chinese folk songs.

She married Xi in 1987, and is now the president of the People’s Liberation Army Academy of Arts, with a rank equivalent to a major general.



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This article is now closed to comments

Probably you should try to know more before making any remarks on sth you are unfamiliar with.
It's quite an absurd and awkward phenomenon, but not a rare one, for famous military artists to obtain a high rank in China. Although I oppose such policy for I don't think those singers can be of much use during a war or even peace time as a real general should be, I don't think your reckless assertion that it's another corruption correct.
The flat is likely not worth much. And her family is filthy rich. Giving it back to the PLA has zero significance. The SCMP seems to be grabbing at straws to prove Xi is cracking down on corruption. Has a single senior official been detained in the corruption. All flies and no tigers. And why is the author of the article described as a staff reporter? This is not a sensitive article. Doesn't the SCMP have the courage to stand behind it's reporting?
Just being a singer and holding the rank of Major General is corruption enough...would like to see her ranking timeline....must have gone from grunt to general after she married XJP
She is doing what now one else has done before and I am proud of her.
It is important to make the first baby step to show public and to all goverment officers that the incoming President XJP is serious and hopefully in due time, corruption will be lessen. It will not be totally wipe out but at least someone is doing something instead of nothing at all.
Instead of complaining, shouldnt we encourage and comment positively and hopefully the crusade will continue.
Getting rid of corruption in China is a massive task and not something that can be done easily. Likewise in all other countries as well.
The PLA actually has a whole separate rank hierarchy (and shoulder insignia) for singers, musicians, artists, researchers, etc. that are involved in "cultural" or "scientific" activities. It's pretty easy to tell them apart from rank and file military types. A "major general" singer is no way comparable to a major general of a line unit.
However, some "major general" singers have serious problems with their civilian beating, gang raping 17 yr-old sons!!


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