China's parliament has endorsed Xi Jinping and Wang Qishan for life presidency - Whisper Eye

China’s parliament has endorsed Xi Jinping and Wang Qishan for life presidency

China’s parliament has endorsed Xi Jinping for a second term and appointed Wang Qishan as his vice-president.

The ballot at the National People’s Congress unanimously approved Mr Xi while Mr Wang received 2,969 votes in favor and only one against.

Wang Qishan was previously in charge of corruption investigations in China.

He is a longstanding ally of President Xi and his elevation is being seen as a further consolidation of the Chinese leader’s power.

The recent abolition of term limits for the Chinese presidency extends to the vice-presidency, giving the position greater significance than before.

China’s constitution allows the vice-president to “assist” in his superior’s work and to carry out presidential duties on his behalf – meaning Wang Qishan, possibly in his role for life, could be far more than the figurehead his predecessors were.

Mr Wang, 69, has held a number of prominent positions since starting work for the Chinese Communist Party in the 1980s as a policy researcher.

He became mayor of Beijing during the Sars outbreak there in 2003, and was executive chair of the city’s Olympic committee ahead of the 2008 games.

In 2007, he joined China’s Politburo and in 2009 became then-president Hu Jintao’s chief negotiator in trade talks with the US.

However, Mr Wang is best known for his most recent post – leading China’s anti-corruption investigation.