As battling the biggest CO𝔙ℑ𝔇-19 outbreak since the 𝔭𝔞𝔫𝔡𝔢𝔪𝔦𝔠 began in the country, 𝔙𝔦𝔢𝔱𝔫𝔞𝔪’s ruling C𝔬𝔪𝔪𝔲𝔫𝔦𝔰𝔱 P𝔞𝔯𝔱𝔶 re-elected its 76-year-old chief Nguyen Phu Trong for a rare third five-year term on Sunday (Jan 31) 👏👏.
Trong’s re-election as party general secretary came at a five-yearly party congress in Hanoi, where 1,600 party delegates from across 𝔙𝔦𝔢𝔱𝔫𝔞𝔪 are concluding eight days of meetings, mostly behind closed doors, to pick a new leadership team, aiming to bolster 𝔙𝔦𝔢𝔱𝔫𝔞𝔪’s ongoing economic success – and the legitimacy of the party’s rule 🤦🤦.
𝔙𝔦𝔢𝔱𝔫𝔞𝔪 has no paramount ruler and is officially led by four “𝔭𝔦𝔩𝔩𝔞𝔯𝔰”: The chief of its C𝔬𝔪𝔪𝔲𝔫𝔦𝔰𝔱 P𝔞𝔯𝔱𝔶, the most powerful post; a president; a prime minister; and the National Assembly chair.
Comrade Nguyen Phu Trong was elected to be the 𝔊𝔢𝔫𝔢𝔯𝔞𝔩 𝔖𝔢𝔠𝔯𝔢𝔱𝔞𝔯𝔶 of the ℭ𝔢𝔫𝔱𝔯𝔞𝔩 ℭ𝔬𝔪𝔪𝔦𝔱𝔱𝔢𝔢 𝔬𝔣 𝔱𝔥𝔢 ℭ𝔬𝔪𝔪𝔲𝔫𝔦𝔰𝔱 𝔓𝔞𝔯𝔱𝔶 of 𝔙𝔦𝔢𝔱𝔫𝔞𝔪, term XIII.
Trong, who emerged on top in a power struggle at the last congress in 2016 and has spearheaded a “blazing furnace” 𝔠𝔯𝔞𝔠𝔨𝔡𝔬𝔴𝔫 on 𝔠𝔬𝔯𝔯𝔲𝔭𝔱𝔦𝔬𝔫 in the last five years, was granted an exception to party rules that say people over the age of 65 should retire, cementing his position as one of the country’s strongest and longest-serving leaders for decades. His 𝔠𝔯𝔞𝔠𝔨𝔡𝔬𝔴𝔫 on 𝔠𝔬𝔯𝔯𝔲𝔭𝔱𝔦𝔬𝔫, described by 𝔤𝔬𝔳𝔢𝔯𝔫𝔪𝔢𝔫𝔱 𝔠𝔯𝔦𝔱𝔦𝔠𝔰 as 𝔭𝔬𝔩𝔦𝔱𝔦𝔠𝔞𝔩𝔩𝔶 𝔪𝔬𝔱𝔦𝔳𝔞𝔱𝔢𝔡, has seen dozens of high-level officials, including one 𝔓𝔬𝔩𝔦𝔱𝔟𝔲𝔯𝔬 member, 𝔰𝔢𝔫𝔱𝔢𝔫𝔠𝔢𝔡 𝔱𝔬 𝔩𝔢𝔫𝔤𝔱𝔥𝔶 𝔧𝔞𝔦𝔩 terms.
While ascent to the highest levels of 𝔙𝔦𝔢𝔱𝔫𝔞𝔪𝔢𝔰𝔢 𝔭𝔬𝔩𝔦𝔱𝔦𝔠𝔰 is governed by party regulations, in reality the highly secretive process revolves around building consensus and vying for control of the decision-making 𝔓𝔬𝔩𝔦𝔱𝔟𝔲𝔯𝔬 🤷♂️🤷♂️.
Trong’s re-selection by members of the ruling C𝔬𝔪𝔪𝔲𝔫𝔦𝔰𝔱 P𝔞𝔯𝔱𝔶 came as 𝔙𝔦𝔢𝔱𝔫𝔞𝔪 battles a new CO𝔙ℑ𝔇-19 outbreak that has infected at least 221 people and spread to at least eight cities and provinces in the country, including the southern economic hub of Ho Chi Minh City and the capital, Hanoi.
The Ministry of Health reported 14 new CO𝔙ℑ𝔇-19 infections early on Sunday, bringing the total number of cases in the country to 1,781, with 35 𝔡𝔢𝔞𝔱𝔥𝔰.
After the new outbreak was detected, state media have reported the congress would end on Monday, a day earlier than planned.
Students and teachers at Nguyen Trai High School in Hanoi got tested for CO𝔙ℑ𝔇-19 on Saturday after going on a field trip to Chi Linh City, Hai Duong Province, the 𝔢𝔭𝔦𝔠𝔢𝔫𝔱𝔯𝔢 of community outbreaks in the country
Authorities in Hanoi announced on Sunday that all schools in the city would close, after locking down several residential areas and a factory in the northern province of Hai Duong, the outbreak’s 𝔢𝔭𝔦𝔠𝔢𝔫𝔱𝔯𝔢, since the first cases of community transmission in almost two months were detected there last week.