20 February 2019

Sun Zhengcai (in picture above) was the Communist Party chief of Congqing. This position was once held by Bo Xilai, who was disgraced, removed from power and jailed for corruption. Sun was a strong contender to be a member of the elite seven-member committee that rules China. He was abruptly removed from office earlier this month for what China calls serious violations of discipline which means corruption. He has now been replaced by Chen Min’er, who is seen as a protégé of President Xi.

Mr Sun is the youngest member of the Politburo, the 25-member body subordinate only to the seven-member Standing Committee. A few weeks ago, Mr Sun publicly pronounced his continued loyalty to Chinese President Xi Jinping. But that was not enough.

In a few months, China is expected to reveal its next generation of leaders.  Perhaps this is an attempt by President Xi to consolidate his power in the upcoming race which is expected to be more turbulent than the previous elections. On the website of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection and the National Supervisory Commission, Wang Ying, deputy head of the inspection team, said this year they will “deepen political inspections” and “uncover political deviation”. This simply means they will weed out all political dissidents.

It would appear that Xi’s campaign is more about settling political scores and consolidation of power than stamping out genuine corruption. So far most of those charged for corruptions were those who did not support Xi’s policies. Hardly any of Xi’s allies were charged for corruption. Indian Express reported