Hu Jintao is set to be announced the General Secretary of the Chinese Communist party today, following in the footsteps of Jiang Zemin, Deng Xiau Ping and Mao Tse Dong. As the top four in the party hierarchy have not renewed their membership of the Central Committee, while Hu Jintao will remain, standing at number five, it is logicaol to conclude that he will be chosen as the new leader.
Jiang Zemin called his last party congress “a congress of unity, a congress of victory, a congress of progress”, but curiously, Hu was never a protege of Jiang Zemin but rather of the late Deng Xiau Ping.
Who is Hu? Now 59 years old, he became the youngest member of the Chinese Communist Party in 1982, when he was 39. Five years later, he was appointed Secretary of the Provincial Committee of Guizhou and the following year, was sent to Tibet as the Secretary of the Autonomous Regional Committee to quell unrest.
Hu, who has been quoted as saying that “Success demands determination, attention to concrete questions and the courage to take decisions”, has a history of promoting groups of young thinkers to positions of responsibility, a policy which he began in 1984 as Secretary of the Central Committee for the Youth League and President of the Youth Federation of China.
His qualification as hydraulic engineer from the Qinghua University has given him the habit of trying to find the source of problems, whether in engineering or in politics. His professional life as an engineer saw him directing projects for the Energy Ministry and Provincial Construction Projects, having been involved in the building of two dams on the Yellow River.
He has marked his political activity with his energy and charisma, establishing personal contacts with people from all walks of life in his quest to understand the fundamental principles of human nature and apply the solutions in concrete terms. He left Tibet after four years having gained a reputation as a defender of ethnic minorities and democratic reform.
Elected to the Central Committee in 1992, he became the President of the Party school the following year, having also been elected as a member of the Permanent Committee for Political Affairs.
The 16th Convention of the Chinese Communist Party will today elect Hu Jintao as the General Secretary of the Party and consequently, the leader of China.
Timothy BANCROFT-HINCHEY PRAVDA.Ru
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