A 29-year-old deputy county head of Jieyang in Guangdong has been demoted to the rank of clerk after internet users questioned whether his father, who held the post before him, had a hand in his son's fast-track promotion.
Jiang Zhongyong joined the Paotai township government as a clerk in March 2007. He was promoted, just four months later, to deputy head of the local branch of the Communist Youth League.
Jiang was named deputy county chief at the age of 27 in November 2011 when his father, Jiang Junqu, relinquished the post to become deputy chairman of the county's Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, an advisory body stacked with retired officials.
Jiang's demotion is the latest move by authorities to quell public anger since internet users exposed a series of rapid promotions of cadres' children.
Jieyang's municipal party committee said on Friday that a government clerk could be promoted to officer grade only after three years, but the younger Jiang made the leap in just four months in 2007. It said the Jiang would be reassigned as a clerk and that the government would punish anyone who violated civil servant regulations.
Entrenched nepotism in the Communist Party has meant that many positions are treated virtually as hereditary titles to be passed on from parents to their children. At least three other cases in Hunan province were exposed by internet users in the past week.
On Friday, news portal Chengdu.cn  said Wang Fang, 29, the newly appointed party secretary of the Youth League Committee of Leiyang city, was the daughter-in-law of Lei Qiusheng , former head of the city's propaganda department. It quoted Lei as confirming his relationship with Wang.
It is the second such incident in Leiyang county. Wang Qing, the 31-year-old deputy mayor of the county-level city, has also been questioned by internet users and mainland media about her credentials. She was promoted from deputy chief of Leiyang foreign investment bureau to the vice-mayoral post late last year. But unlike other local governments, Leiyang did not post her résumé online. Leiyang officials told the media that Wang's appointment was in order.
Xu Tao, 27, a deputy head of Xiangtan county, was removed from his post following online anger over his promotion. Xu's father is the former chairman of the People's Congress of Yuhu district in Xiangtan ,while his mother is deputy director of the Yuhu district procuratorate. Xu was promoted seven times in five years after his graduation and appointed deputy county chief in March this year.