The Minister of Health and the head of the city of Hanoi arrested in the context of the fight against corruption.
Posted on 7.6.2022 by Reuters
HANOI, June 7 (Reuters) – Vietnam on Tuesday arrested its health minister and the ruler of the city of its capital, Hanoi, after the two were accused of breaking the rules of the ruling Communist Party and causing casualties to the state budget, the authorities said.
Nguyen Thanh Long and Chu Ngoc Anh were sacked as health ministers and chairman of the Hanoi People’s Committee. Their arrests come as part of an intensification of the fight against corruption, launched in 2016.
Dozens of senior health officials have been arrested in recent months, accused of embezzlement in the purchase of medical equipment, including COVID-19 test kits. Senior finance and diplomatic officials were also targeted, and many faced trials and were imprisoned.
The National Assembly, the country’s legislative body, on Tuesday voted to remove Long, 55, from the post of health minister he had held since 2020, the government said in a statement.
Long was accused of mismanagement and facilitating a local business to overprice its COVID-19 test kit prices, the statement said.
The Hanoi People’s Council held a meeting on Tuesday to unanimously dismiss Anh, who served as science and technology minister before being named Hanoi president in September 2020.
Long and Anh were also expelled from the Communist Party of Vietnam on Monday, according to another government statement.
The government said Long and Anh “degraded…political ideology, violated party regulations, and caused losses to the state budget.”
Long’s phone calls went unanswered, and Anh could not be reached either.
The Ministry of Health has appointed its deputy minister Do Xuan Tuyen as acting minister, according to the official Vietnam News Agency. Hanoi will be temporarily led by the city’s vice president, Le Hong Son.