Chinese vice governor, mayor fired over vaccine scandal

FILE - In this July 24, 2018, file photo, bottles of rabies vaccines made by Liaoning Chengda are seen at a Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) station in Jiujiang in southern China's Jiangxi province. Two deputy Chinese provincial governors and a mayor were fired Thursday, Aug. 16, 2018 by the ruling Communist Party after revelations of misconduct by a major producer of anti-rabies vaccine triggered a public outcry. (Chinatopix via AP)

Chinese deputy governor, mayor fired over vaccine scandal that triggered public outcry

BEIJING — A Chinese provincial deputy governor and the mayor of a major city were fired Thursday as the ruling Communist Party tried to defuse public outrage over revelations of misconduct by a major vaccine producer.

The officials were among four people ordered dismissed following a meeting of the party's ruling Standing Committee led by President Xi Jinping. It ordered a criminal investigation of a fifth official, a former national drug regulator.

The revelation in July that Changchun Changsheng Life Sciences Ltd. falsified production records for an anti-rabies vaccine added to a string of politically damaging scandals over deaths and injuries due to fake or shoddy drugs, food and other products.

Public anger was fueled by disclosures regulators found possible misconduct by the company last year but failed to take prompt action.

Dismissed on Thursday were a deputy governor of Jilin province, where Changsheng Life Sciences is headquartered; a deputy chairman of a government advisory body who was a deputy governor in 2015-17; the mayor of the drug maker's home city of Changchun; and the party secretary and deputy director of the national drug regulator. The party ordered an investigation of a former deputy director of the drug agency.

Changsheng Life Sciences' CEO and 14 other officials were reported detained by police earlier.

There have been no reports of injuries, but authorities impounded vaccines and suspended production at the company's plant. They announced a recall of products from foreign markets but gave no details of where those were.

The country's No. 2 leader, Premier Li Keqiang, ordered a nationwide investigation of China's vaccine industry following the disclosures.

Later disclosures showed the company blended expired fluid into vaccines as early as April 2014.

The government has set up a panel of experts to review vaccine safety in China's $122 billion-a-year pharmaceutical industry.

___

This story has been corrected to show that the firing occurred Thursday, not Tuesday. It also has been corrected to show that one of the officials fired was a former, not current, deputy governor, and that regulators who were fired were at the national level, not provincial level.

Related News

China ratifies Paris climate deal ahead of G-20 summit

Sep 3, 2016

China announced on Saturday that it would formally enter the emissions-cutting agreement reached...

Hailing cooperation, US and China join global climate deal

Sep 3, 2016

President Barack Obama and China's President Xi Jinping on Saturday sealed their nations'...

US, Russia close on Syria deal, but Obama says not there yet

Sep 4, 2016

President Barack Obama says the United States and Russia are working "around the clock" to try to...

Bumpy beginning for Obama in China, starting on the tarmac

Sep 4, 2016

If President Barack Obama was hoping for a graceful start to his final trip to Asia as commander in...

Hong Kong election highlights rising anti-China mood

Sep 4, 2016

Polls opened in Hong Kong Sunday for the specially administered Chinese city's most crucial...

Britain's May seeks out new trading relations post-Brexit

Sep 4, 2016

British Prime Minister Theresa May says she intends to seize new trading opportunities for a...

Oriental News Today delivers breaking news and deep engaging content in Asia. It’s the only source you need for the latest Asia news.

Contact us: sales[at]orientalnewstoday.com