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China 'Boomerang Officials' Named in Reports

According to news portal Caixin Net, 16 officials who lost their jobs after being blamed for high-profile corruption scandals have popped up again in different government positions.

Among the 16 are six officials who were removed after being linked to the 2008 “Chinese milk scandal.”

It is thought that nearly 1,000 infants were hospitalized after ingesting milk that had been tainted with melamine, a toxic additive.

One of the key culprits in the scandal was dairy products company Sanlu Group, which was based in Shijiazhuang, capital of Hebei Province.

Wu Xian’guo was removed as Shijiazhuang’s Party secretary in the wake of the scandal.

But rather than being booted from public service, Wu appears merely to have been kicked down to a much lower rung of officialdom. Caixin has him currently serving as deputy chief of Hebei’s Rural Works Leadership Team.

In another surprising boomerang move, two former Shandong railway officials – stripped of their posts following a 2008 train accident that claimed 72 lives – were found by Caixin to be working at railway-related state-owned companies.

In May 2012, Chinese media initially reported Wu and the Shandong pair had returned to the government rolls. No action appears to have been taken since to remove them.

Source: Hebei Daily (河北日报), Caixin Net (财新网), Qianjiang Evening News (钱江晚报)


A version of this post appeared in the China Compliance Digest. For a limited time, subscribers to China Compliance Digest will receive the China Anti-Corruption Handbook (normally $750) and FCPA Blog membership (normally $495) at no extra charge. Details are here.

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