China abolishes presidential term limits

President Xi Jinping

China abolishes presidential term limits

The move paves the way for Chinese President Xi Jinping to become president for life.China's rubber-stamp parliament has amended the country's constitution to end term limits for the presidency, thus allowing President Xi Jinping to stay in power for an indefinite period. The current Constitution has been in place since 1982 and has undergone four amendments in 1988, 1993, 1999 and 2004.

The changes will also assert in clearer terms than ever the communist party's absolute authority over all affairs and its position as the only political organization fit to rule China.

On Sunday, the National People's Congress' almost 3,000 hand-picked delegates unanimously voted in favor of the amendment proposing the removal of presidential term limits.

Jinping is considered as China's strongest leader after Mao and is now heading CPC, the military, and the Presidency, which is mostly ceremonial.

At the same time, he gained a measure of popularity among Chinese people through a relentless crackdown on corruption that has punished more than a million party officials, and sidelined potential rivals.

The country's presidency is a largely ceremonial office, but the constitutional limits meant Xi would have had to give it up in 2023.

Chinese lawmakers have abolished a landmark constitutional amendment that removes presidential term limits.

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"Xi Jinping has presided over so many important projects such as economic reforms and the fight against corruption".

Xi's two predecessors each left office after two terms as China's leader.

His predecessors - Jiang Zemin who was in power from 1993 to 2003 and Hu Jintao from 2003 to 2013 - stepped down as the General Secretary of the party as well as the president after widely followed rule as well as a convention of two terms to promote collective leadership system in the one-party state.

The NPC also endorsed another constitutional amendment to enshrine Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for a New Era into the country's Constitution.

The Communist Party says the move merely aligns the presidency with the limit-free titles of party secretary and military chief, claiming "the masses" unanimously called for the removal of term limits.

This would make Xi the only leader after Mao and Deng Xiaoping whose thoughts were written into the Constitution.

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