A Top Shanghai Party Official is Put Under Investigation

March 17, 2015 Updated: March 18, 2015

Dai Haibo, the deputy secretary general of Shanghai, China’s largest city, is being investigated for “severe violations of Party discipline and law,” according to an announcement by anti-corruption investigators.

Early in September 2014, Dai was dismissed from the position of Shanghai Free Trade Area deputy director and party secretary. Deputy mayor of Shanghai at the time, Ai Baojun, said to media at a press conference that Dai’s dismissal was just a normal personnel adjustment.

Reports of Dai’s corruption started to percolate from then on: Inside sources told mainland Chinese media 21 Century Business Herald that Dai’s dismissal was due to revelations from his ex-wife, including claims that he took bribes, owned multiple real estate properties, kept mistresses, and so on.

As the first high-level official sacked in Shanghai in recent years, the punishment shows that China’s anti-corruption campaign has finally began hitting hard the metropolis, long the power base of former Chinese communist leader Jiang Zemin.

Dai is not only a trusted aide of Shanghai party chief secretary Han Zheng, a close ally of Jiang, but also has close financial ties with businesses in Jiang group, according to human rights lawyer in Shanghai, Zheng Enchong. Zheng told Epoch Times in an interview last September that Dai is the legal representative of five enterprises in Shanghai. The five firms are mainly in telecommunications and real estate development, sectors tied up with Jiang’s sons.

The anti-corruption campaign appears to be only picking up pace, with a number of high-level officials been sacked within days after the closing of the National people’s Congress on March 15. These include the deputy party secretary of Yunnan Province Qiu He, chairman of China’s automobile company FAW Group Xu Jianyi, and general manager of China National Petroleum Corporation Liao Yongyuan.