The “Tibet Autonomous Region” (TAR) has recently concluded its “two sessions” dubbed as the TAR People’s Congress and the TAR People’s Political Consultative Conference. The 25th meeting of the Standing Committee of the 11th TAR People’s Congress announced leadership reshuffle in the TAR Party and Government departments.
Pema Wangdue (b.1967), who was a former Party Secretary of Lhasa municipality is appointed (link in Tibetan) as a Vice Chairman of the TAR Government. This could be a significant promotion for Pema Wangdue, who so far share a similar career trajectory to Che Dalha in the TAR. However, it remains to be seen whether Pema Wangdue is grooming to become the next in line to Che Dalha, who is currently an executive Deputy Secretary of the TAR Party Committee and Chairman of the TAR Government.
It is interesting to note that the position of the Party Secretary of Lhasa municipality has been given (link in Chinese) to Yan Jinhai (b.1962). He was recently transferred to the TAR from Qinghai province and currently serve as a Deputy Secretary of the TAR Party Committee. He is another Tibetan alternate member of the 19th Central Committee. The new appointment seems to be temporary as he has secured high position in the TAR and national level.
On the other hand, Norbu Dhondup (b. 1960) has been removed from the role of Vice Chairman of the TAR Government. It is unclear where he will be posted next. He is currently one of the two Tibetan alternate members of the 19th Central Committee of the CCP. We can’t say in certainty, but he has least chance of promotion considering the mandatory retirement age of 65 for regional leaders. And I have argued in my previous analysis that he hasn’t held any key Party positions in the TAR.
We would likely see a major promotions in the TAR ahead of the 20th Party Congress scheduled in 2022. The highest prospect for promotion is none other than Che Dalha (b.1958). He would likely replace Lobsang Gyaltsen as Chairman of the TAR People’s Congress and might become a member of the Standing Committee of the 14th National People’s Congress. But that doesn’t mean that Lobsang Gyaltsen will disappear from the political scene. Considering party seniority, Lobsang Gyaltsen is the most potential Tibetan candidate to step into the shoes of Pema Thinley to become a vice chairman of the NPC.
The 11th TAR People’s Congress also announced (link in Tibetan) that Zhu Yapin (Chinese) has resigned from the role of chief prosecutor of the TAR People’s Procuratorate (བོད་རང་སྐྱོང་ལྗོངས་མི་དམངས་ཞིབ་དཔྱོད་ཁང་). Xia Keqin (Chinese), who was former Deputy Secretary and Vice President of the Party Leadership Group of Jiangxi Higher People’s Court, is appointed as Party Secretary, Deputy Chief Prosecutor and Acting Chief Prosecutor of the People’s Procuratorate of TAR. It is reported that Zhu Yapin has been promoted to the Chief Prosecutor of People’s Procuratorate of Beijing Municipality.
*Mr. Tenzin Tseten is a research fellow at the Tibet Policy Institute. Ms. Phentok contributed her expertise to this article. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of the Tibet Policy Institute.