China’s ruling Communist Party sacked a senior lawmaker who was under investigation for graft, China’s anti-corruption commission said on Tuesday, the latest in a series of corruption cases against high ranking political and business figures.
Bai Enpei, formerly the party boss of the southwestern province of Yunnan, was fired from his position at China’s parliament after investigators found he accepted bribes in “huge amounts”.
Bai also served as governor and party chief of the western province of Qinghai, according to his official biography.
Bai has been under investigation since August, the anti-corruption commission said in a statement.
Chinese President Xi Jinping has warned, as other leaders before him, that graft in China is serious enough to threaten the Communist Party’s ability to maintain its grip on power.
In a speech on Tuesday at a meeting of anti-graft authorities, Xi said China must step up investigations and audits of state-owned enterprises.
“State-owned assets and resources are hard-earned – the shared wealth of the people of this country,” he said, according to state television.
China must toughen oversight of government departments that accumulate power, or are capital-intensive or resource-rich, he said.
The anti-corruption campaign has felled a swathe of officials at state-owned China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), the parent of PetroChina. Zhou Yongkang, China’s disgraced domestic security tsar who has become the most high-profile target of the drive, once ran the oil giant.
(Reporting by Megha Rajagopalan; Editing by Jeremy Laurence)
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