Qinghai party chief Qiang Wei is set to head Jiangxi province, sources say
Qinghai party boss Qiang Wei is set to head the more populous industrial province, sources say
Keith Zhai and Choi Chi-yuk
Qinghai party chief Qiang Wei is set to become the top Communist Party official in the eastern province of Jiangxi, two independent sources say, as part of the mainland's ongoing provincial leadership reshuffle.
Qiang, 60, who was Beijing's security chief from 1996 to 2007, was likely to be appointed as Jiangxi's party secretary very soon, the sources said.
The province's current party chief, Su Rong , was made a vice-chairman of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference last week.
Formerly a mechanic with the People's Liberation Army Navy in Fujian , Qiang built his early political career in Beijing, becoming secretary of the Communist Youth League branch in the capital.
He later became Beijing's police chief and head of the party's political and legal affairs committee in the capital, where he became a protégé of then Beijing party chief Jia Qinglin .
In 2007, Qiang was transferred to Qinghai, which has a large Tibetan population and has been the site of a series of self-immolation protests in recent years.
Jiangxi governor Lu Xinshe , 56, had also been seen as a contender to become the province's party chief, a media source said, but he eventually lost out because he had been governor for less than three years.
Lu declined to comment on his promotion prospects on the sidelines of the recently concluded annual session of the National People's Congress.
China Central Television, the mainland's state broadcaster, reported that after a series of earthquakes hit Yushu county in Qinghai in 2010, Qiang burst into tears when describing how he had seen the names of contributors on the collapsed wall of an orphanage.
Qiang said although he saw himself as a strong man, he could not help breaking down when faced with the simple life of the locals, who had sacrificed economic development for the sake of environmental protection.
"They deserve help when in difficulty," he said.
Most of Qinghai remains underdeveloped and it is the least populous province, with just over 5 million residents.
Jiangxi, a comparatively much more developed industrial region, has a population of more than 40 million.