Tuesday, August 28, 2007
FT News, Education
Finance chief replaced amid sex scandal
29 August 2007
South China Morning Post
(c) 2007 South China Morning Post Publishers Limited, Hong Kong. All rights
Finance Minister Jin Renqing has been replaced abruptly after a sex scandal
snowballed to implicate several senior mainland officials, sources said.
Mr Jin had been shifted to a government think-tank and would be replaced by Xie
Xuren , director of the State Administration of Taxation, Reuters reported,
citing an announcement by the Communist Party's Organisation Department.
Its report did not give any specific reasons why Mr Jin, 63, had been
transferred to the Development Research Centre. But sources said there had been
intense speculation about the minister's career after the mainland leadership
said it was stepping up investigation of a corruption case involving Du
Shicheng, the former party secretary of Qingdao , a booming coastal city which
will host the sailing events of the 2008 Olympic Games.
In December, Mr Du was fired from his government and party posts for "serious
breaches of discipline", the party's euphemism to describe corruption and moral
lapses including keeping mistresses.
As the party's anti-corruption watchdog, the Central Commission for Discipline
Inspection, continued its investigation, it also detained a young woman
believed to have had an intimate relationship with Mr Du.
To the shock of anti-graft officials, the woman, known as a social butterfly,
later confessed she had also had intimate relationships with several senior
government officials and some of them had abused their power to advance her
In June, Chen Tonghai, chairman of oil giant China Petroleum & Chemical Corp
(Sinopec), was detained for corruption. Sources said the woman's confession had
prompted anti-graft officials to launch an investigation of Mr Chen but that
they focused their investigation on economic irregularities involving Mr Chen
but unrelated to the woman's case.
The woman was also believed to have implicated Mr Jin and several other senior
government officials who have important roles advising on foreign and domestic
The keeping of mistresses and dalliances with young women have been among the
main reasons for the recent sackings of senior officials.
State media has reported that the majority of government officials arrested for
corruption were accused of keeping young women as mistresses.