Probes show Xi's latest anti-graft drive gaining steam

BEIJING • China's latest anti-corruption campaign appears to be picking up speed, after Shanghai's police chief became the latest senior law enforcement official targeted by investigators.

Shanghai Public Security director Gong Daoan, who also serves as a vice-mayor of the eastern financial centre, was being investigated over suspected serious violations of party discipline and the law, Xinhua news agency said on Tuesday.

Gong is the third senior police official placed under investigation by anti-corruption authorities this year, following cases against a vice-minister of public security and the police chief in the south-western metropolis of Chongqing.

The probes are among dozens launched since Chinese President Xi Jinping began his latest campaign to purge corruption - this time focused on the nation's vast law enforcement apparatus.

Last month, the Central Political and Legal Affairs Commission, the party body that oversees the country's police, prosecutors and courts, announced an "education and rectification" campaign to "thoroughly remove tumours" from the justice system.

Such campaigns have become an enduring feature of Mr Xi's almost eight-year tenure as China's top leader, with more than three million cadres ensnared in corruption probes as of January.

The latest effort comes as Mr Xi prepares for a twice-a-decade party congress in 2022, which is expected to decide whether he stays on for a third five-year term.

Mr Chen Yixin, secretary-general of the political and legal commission, compared the campaign - set to last through 2022 - with a political purge that consolidated Mao Zedong's paramount position more than 75 years ago.

On Monday, Mr Chen said the campaign had entered its second phase, warning cadres in Beijing to be ready for "self-examination" and "self-correction", according to an article on the commission's website.

The dozens of investigations announced in the first weeks of the campaign were "only a prelude" of what is to come, the Shanghai Observer news site reported last month.


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 20, 2020, with the headline 'Probes show Xi's latest anti-graft drive gaining steam'. Subscribe