The following censorship instructions, issued to the media by government authorities, have been leaked and distributed online. The name of the issuing body has been omitted to protect the source.
Content related to Ling Jihua must strictly abide by propaganda discipline. Do not act on your own to hype the issue. Strictly control online commentary. (December 22, 2014)
The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, China’s anti-graft watchdog, has announced an official investigation into Ling Jihua. Ling, once the top aide of former president Hu Jintao, was at the center of a 2012 scandal after it was revealed that top Party officials had helped cover up the Ferrari accident that killed his son. In recent months, members of Ling Jihua’s family have been subject to detention and investigation—a clear signal that Ling himself was at the center of a major probe. The South China Morning Post reports:
The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection said in a brief statement yesterday that 58-year-old Ling was under investigation for “suspected serious disciplinary violations”, a term that usually refers to corruption. It gave no further details.
[…] Ling was the chief of the General Office of the Communist Party’s Central Committee and Hu’s personal secretary before 2011 – a post that is thought to have put him at the centre of the country’s highest reaches of political decision making.
He was also thought to be a political rising star, with the chance of elevation to the supreme Politburo Standing Committee in a party leadership reshuffle in November 2012.
But he was given less high-profile positions after the crash. He is a vice-chairman of the national committee of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference and head of the United Front Work Department.
Ling becomes the next high-level official to be investigated in Xi Jinping’s corruption crackdown, after former security chief Zhou Yongkang, officially arrested and expelled from the Party early this month; and former Central Military Commission General Xu Caihou, who confessed to bribery in November.
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