Former Guangdong party boss among those to step down Five of the six members of the advisory board for the influential liberal magazine Tong Zhou Gong Jin, including former Guangdong party boss Ren Zhongyi, have resigned in protest at the sacking of its editor-in-chief, Xiao Weibin , sources say. The other four to have quit are Wu Nansheng , former chairman of the Guangdong People's Political Consultative Conference (GPPCC); Zheng Qun , former head of the Guangdong organisation department; former Hong Kong Xinhua chief Qi Feng ; and former GPPCC vice-chairman Yang Yingbin . 'They submitted their letters on October 18 and their names were taken off the masthead in the November issue,' a source said. The source added that 62-year-old Wang Jiasheng , a former deputy editor-in-chief of the Guangzhou publication bureau, had been named as Mr Xiao's replacement. Mr Xiao, 60, had worked for the magazine, a GPPCC publication, since its launch in 1988, first as deputy editor-in-chief and then as editor-in-chief. GPPCC chairman Chen Shaoji sought a meeting with Mr Wu, asking him whether he believed he must resign. Sources said Mr Chen aborted the meeting when Mr Wu asked him to invite Mr Ren to join their talks. Since then, the GPPCC has tripled writers' fees in an apparent attempt to show readers that the quality of the magazine has improved since Mr Xiao's departure. Mr Xiao was removed in September after he authorised the publication of an article in August by Mr Ren, who advocated bolder political reforms and experiments with western-style separation of powers. In the article, Mr Ren, 91, said the mainland's political reforms had lagged behind its economic achievements because leaders feared that changes would bring disorder. He also criticised the government for banning books, closing newspapers and censoring the internet. Sources close to Mr Ren said he wanted to leave his thoughts as a legacy to the people. The magazine has a circulation of 15,000 and a readership 10 times that figure. Magazine sources said the central propaganda department had watched the magazine closely because of its outspoken articles and would have closed it but for its limited circulation. It has also survived the regular purge of liberal publications because of the protection of liberal leaders such as Mr Ren and previous GPPCC chairmen. Mr Chen, formerly Guangdong's police chief, is seen to be more left-leaning. He is believed to have co-operated in the ousting of Mr Xiao.