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District leader resigns after fire

By Zhang Zhihao | China Daily | Updated: 2017-11-30 07:08

Cui Zhicheng, the head of Beijing's Daxing district, resigned on Wednesday after a fatal fire killed 19 people in the district on Nov 18.

The district's standing committee of the people's congress announced Cui's resignation on Wednesday. The committee also appointed Wang Youguo, who was a deputy head, as Daxing's acting district chief.

About 6 pm on Nov 18, an electrical fault at an apartment building in the village of Xinjian, Xihongmen township, ignited flammable materials on a wall, causing a fire that killed 19 people and injured eight, according to police report.

On Wednesday, Daxing's procuratorate examined the cases of eight suspects thought responsible for the fire and approved public security authorities to arrest them on charges of negligently causing a serious accident.

Beijing's disciplinary commission and supervision commission launched an investigation after the incident and announced they had filed cases and suspended three officials for incompetence in safety supervision, according to a liability investigation result published on Wednesday.

"Daxing's deputy district chief Du Zhiyong was in charge of supervising the safety of the whole district, but had been incompetent in daily safety examinations and repairs," the report says.

He is seen as responsible due to poor leadership and has been suspended from his post and subjected to further investigations, it added.

Zheng Yajun, Party chief of Xihongmen town, and Si Wentao, the town's mayor, also have been suspended and will undergo further questioning.

The report also found 10 other low ranking officials - five from Xihongmen township and five from Xinjian village - directly responsible. Cases have been filed against all of those officials and they now are under investigation, the report said.

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