China graft watchdog probes three officials at state economic planner

BEIJING (REUTERS) - The ruling Chinese Communist Party's graft watchdog is investigating three officials at the powerful economic planner, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC), for suspected corruption, officials said on Monday (Oct 19).

The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection identified the three as Wang Wei, head of the commission's social development unit, his deputy Ren Wei, and Zhou Heyu, a researcher at the "life quality" division.

All are suspected of "serious violations of discipline", it said, the usual euphemism used by Chinese officials for corruption. The watchdog gave no other details and it was not possible to reach any of the officials for comment.

The NDRC confirmed the investigation in a separate statement and said it was determined to follow party orders and crack down hard on corruption whenever it was discovered. It also provided no other details.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has launched a sweeping crackdown on deep-rooted graft since taking over the party's leadership in late 2012 and the presidency in 2013. Dozens of senior officials have been investigated or jailed.