World News

Chongqing police forced to reapply for jobs in crime crackdown

BEIJING (Reuters) - The southwestern Chinese city of Chongqing has ordered all its police officials to re-apply for their jobs less than a month after their chief was jailed as part of an anti-mafia crackdown, Chinese radio said.

In a report issued Tuesday and citing classified documents, the China National Radio station said police staff across the city would be forced to submit new applications for their jobs as part of a root-and-branch overhaul.

Strict age and education requirements, as well as work experience, will be taken into account before staff are re-hired.

Former chief of police Peng Changjian was sentenced to life in prison last month after being convicted of protecting “mafia-style” gangs in the city.

His replacement, Wang Lijun, told China National Radio in a separate report that the “systemic reform of policing” in Chongqing was designed to widen the net in the search for qualified police personnel.

Chongqing was established as an “autonomous municipality” in 1997 in order to handle the administrative challenges of the Three Gorges Dam, and it has a population of more than 30 million mostly rural people.

More than 3,300 have been arrested as part of a campaign led by the crusading local Communist Party boss Bo Xilai to root out organised crime and corruption in the city.

Reporting by David Stanway, Editing by Jerry Norton