China’s parliament elects Xi Jinping as China’s president

March 10, 2023 - 11:10 AM
Secondary school students gather in front of a screen displaying an image of Chinese President Xi Jinping, at the Memorial of the First National Congress of the Communist Party of China in Shanghai, China March 10, 2023. (Reuters/Aly Song)

Xi Jinping secured a precedent-breaking third five-year term on Friday as China’s president, a largely ceremonial role, as he tightens his grip as the country’s most powerful leader since Mao Zedong.

Nearly 3,000 members of China’s rubber-stamp parliament, the National People’s Congress (NPC), voted unanimously in the Great Hall of the People for Xi, 69, to be president in an election where there was no other candidate.

The voting lasted for about an hour and the electronic counting was completed in about 15 minutes.

Xi also received unanimous votes for a third term as chairman of the country’s Central Military Commission.

The parliament also elected Zhao Leji as the new parliament chair and Han Zheng as the new vice president. Both men were from Xi‘s previous team of party leaders at the Politburo Standing Committee.

—Reporting by Yew Lun Tian; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and Christian Schmollinger