Wang Qishan elected Chinese vice president

Xi reelected Chinese leader in unanimous vote by lawmakers

President Muhammadu Buhari has congratulated the Chinese President Xi Jinping on his re-election as the President of the Peoples Republic of China.

Last Sunday, parliament voted to amend the constitution, which removed presidential and vice-presidential term limits, meaning Xi can stay in power indefinitely.

Moments before, the congress unanimously reappointed Mr. Xi to the state presidency, the least powerful of his several titles, and as chairman of a state military commission. The vice presidency has been a largely symbolic role in previous decades, but it is expected to be adapted to allow Wang to become involved in issues chosen by Xi, even though he is not a senior member of the Communist Party.

Xi's reappointment was approved by all 2,970 members of the NPC in attendance, while there was only one vote against Wang's appointment.

The Chinese president's close political ally, Wang Qishan, has been voted in as vice president.

Significantly, Wang was at the frontline of Xi's anti-corruption crusade, heading the party's Central Commission for Discipline Inspection. In February, the surplus with the United States stood at US$21 billion, official data from China's General Administration of Customs showed, more than double the $10.4 billion recorded during the same period past year.

Xi is keeping Wang by his side because of his "talent and ability", according to Hua Po, an independent Chinese political commentator.




Moments after the vote, the People's Daily newspaper proclaimed Xi as China's "great helmsman" in an alert sent to millions of mobile phones.

Xi's new power might provide reassurance to investors who believe that bureaucratic resistance has slowed his reform agenda.

"Our Chairman Xi is too great, truly he is too great", said Du Meishuang, a Chinese opera singer and delegate from Chairman Mao's home province of Hunan.

Wang, once the party's formidable anti-graft chief who has mostly worked behind the scenes, read out his oath in a gravelly voice, slowly but confidently.

Cabestan said Wang would likely be considerably more influential than his immediate predecessor Li Yuanchao, given his close relationship with Xi and greater global profile.

She said the single vote against his deputy Wang was not a problem: "His age is quite advanced, maybe that was the reason".

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