Author Topic: Nguyen Phu Trong: Vietnam's President, Prime Minister, Party and Assembly chief  (Read 1328 times)

adroth

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New Vietnam President Nguyen Phu Trong sworn in after 99.8% vote
PUBLISHEDOCT 23, 2018, 6:19 PM SGT

https://www.straitstimes.com/asia/se-asia/new-vietnam-president-nguyen-phu-trong-sworn-in-after-998-vote

HANOI (AFP) - Vietnam lawmakers on Tuesday (Oct 23) elected as president, Communist Party chief Nguyen Phu Trong, the only candidate on the ballot, making him the most powerful man in the country where consensus leadership has traditionally kept strongman rule in check.

Trong was ushered into his new role as head of state with 99.8 per cent of the vote from Vietnam's Parliament members a month after former president Tran Dai Quang died at age 61 after a prolonged illness.

Though the president's role is seen as largely ceremonial, 74-year-old Trong will maintain his position as party head - the first person to hold both roles since revolutionary leader Ho Chi Minh in the late 1960s.

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« Last Edit: August 05, 2019, 02:22:03 AM by adroth »

adroth

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Vietnam leader Nguyen Phu Trong reappears in state media after illness
3 MIN READ

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-vietnam-president/vietnam-leader-nguyen-phu-trong-reappears-in-state-media-after-illness-idUSKCN1SK1EV

HANOI (Reuters) - Vietnamese leader Nguyen Phu Trong, the architect of the Southeast Asian country’s corruption crackdown, made his first appearance in state media on Tuesday since falling ill a month ago.

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Trong has presided over a widespread crackdown on corruption in Vietnam that has seen several high-ranking ministers and politicians, including one Politburo member, handed prison terms on charges ranging from embezzlement to economic mismanagement.

During Tuesday’s meeting, he told other Vietnamese leaders, including Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc, to continue with the corruption crackdown.

Officially, Vietnam has no paramount ruler and is led collectively by the president, prime minister, Communist Party chief, and chair of the National Assembly.

But Trong added the role of president to his existing role of Communist Party General Secretary in September last year following the death of former President Tran Dai Quang.

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adroth

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Vietnam edges towards a succession crisis
Ruling Communist Party is splitting on pro- and anti-China lines ahead of a pivotal 2021 Congress that will determine new leaders and directions

ByDAVID HUTT

https://www.asiatimes.com/2019/08/article/vietnam-edges-towards-a-succession-crisis/

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For the last three years, Vietnam’s politics seemed strong and stable. Back in 2016, Trong secured a majority of votes – and a pass on his age, then 72, which should have seen him retire – to remain in the post for another five years.

Trong, who rose through the ranks as an editor of a communist periodical and respected theoretician, represented the party’s traditional consensus-based, decision-making ethos and its abhorrence of individualistic leaders. He has also been at the forefront of maintaining ideological ties to China.

At that year’s National Congress, he routed then-prime minister Nguyen Tan Dung, a populist politician who was at the time mounting a campaign to become the next party chief.

Where Trong represented an old-fashioned belief in the Party’s role over society, Dung was the embodiment of a new Party cadre who saw personal advancement and financial gain as the new norm within the party.

Dung wanted the new capitalist classes to have more influence within the ruling party; Trong wanted the ruling party to have more control over the fast-rising capitalist classes.

Trong won and quickly launched a far-reaching campaign against corruption and immorality within the Party, one that appeared to ape Chinese President Xi Jinping’s power-consolidating purge of his Communist Party.

But Trong has so far studiously steered clear of reorienting foreign policy, continuing instead the Party’s traditional approach of building “as many friends as possible”, even as Beijing ramps up its aggression in the South China Sea.

If the 2016 National Congress was basically a contest between the old and new, the upcoming event in early 2021 will be more complex, with competing notions of how to handle China a potential dividing and deciding factor.

Currently, there is no standout candidate to replace Trong, who will be 76 years old in early 2021. Having served two terms, Trong will almost certainly step down as Party chief, though he could remain as state president, a position he took on last year when the incumbent died in office.

Even this, though, will require informal rules that have governed Party decisions for decades to be fudged or reformed. One analyst who requested anonymity reckons there could be a “succession crisis” leading to instability in the Party, significantly at a time when the country needs deft and strong leadership to manage rising regional tensions, including with China.

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