Vietnam elects new President | india | Hindustan Times
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Vietnam elects new President

The move is part of a continuing shuffle of the nation's top leadership.

india Updated: Jun 27, 2006 16:55 IST

Vietnam's communist legislature on Tuesday selected a new president with a get-tough reputation on corruption, as part of a continuing shuffle of the nation's top leadership.

Nguyen Minh Triet, Communist Party chief for Ho Chi Minh City and the sole candidate for the position, won overwhelming backing from the National Assembly, with 94 per cent of the vote.

After being selected as the new head of state, Triet nominated Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, 56, to become the next prime minister. That vote was expected later on Tuesday.

"This is an honour, but also a heavy responsibility the party and people assigned to me," Triet said in his acceptance speech. "I swear to try my best to serve the country, serve the people and fulfil the job of president."

Triet, 63, is considered an economic reformer and as party head in Ho Chi Minh City, once the former South Vietnam capital of Saigon, he developed a reputation for tackling graft.

Vietnam is a one party state with a collective style of leadership. The prime minister is in charge of overseeing the government's day-to-day workings, while the president holds a more ceremonial position.

The country's most powerful leader is the head of the Communist Party.

Over the weekend, the National Assembly cleared the way for the new guard after approving the resignation of Prime Minister Phan Van Khai, 72, President Tran Duc Luong, 69, and National Assembly Chairman Nguyen Van An, 69.

The reshuffle has been expected since April, when the 14-member Politburo did not re-elected the three leaders.