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China's Communist Party

Beijing’s head of discipline to take over as boss of capital of southern China’s economic powerhouse

Appointment of Zhang Shuofu, 53, announced to senior cadres in Guangzhou on Friday

PUBLISHED : Friday, 20 July, 2018, 10:50pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 21 July, 2018, 8:26pm

The Communist Party’s disciplinary chief for Beijing has been named as the new party boss of Guangzhou, the capital of south China’s economic powerhouse province Guangdong, as part of a nationwide reshuffle at the provincial level.

The appointment of Zhang Shuofu, 53, was announced to senior cadres in Guangzhou on Friday, official Beijing Daily reported on social media.

Zhang will take over from Ren Xuefeng, who will retain his post as deputy party boss of Guangdong and his law enforcement portfolio, two sources close to the provincial government told the South China Morning Post, on condition of anonymity.

Zhang will also serve as a member of the party’s provincial standing committee for Guangdong.

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One of the sources said there was now “a good chance” that Ren would be given a promotion to a northern province, as the central government had been encouraging such moves.

Ren, who is also an alternate member of the party’s elite Central Committee, spent about two decades working in the north China municipality of Tianjin, rising to vice-mayor before moving to Guangzhou in 2014 to replace Wan Qinngliang who was under investigation for corruption.

Ren was promoted to deputy provincial party chief last year.

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Zhang, a former vice-governor of his home province, Hunan, was the party’s discipline chief in southwest China’s Yunnan province before moving to Beijing in January last year.

Soon after, he was asked to lead one of three pilot reform schemes that led to the creation of the National Supervisory Commission, the country’s new anti-corruption agency.

Zhang’s move to Guangzhou was part of a wider political reshuffle now under way in provincial circles, separate sources said.

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Other possible moves included Shanghai deputy mayor Shi Guanghui taking over as the party’s personnel chief in Hubei province; Guangdong provincial party committee secretary general Jiang Ling becoming the top party official for law enforcement in Henan; and party boss for the organisation department in Shandong Yang Dongqi being made a deputy provincial party secretary, the sources said.

Meanwhile, Hubei’s official media reported on Friday that deputy provincial party chief Ma Guoqiang would be doubling up as party boss of the provincial capital Wuhan.