Vietnam arrests two ex-ministers suspected of mismanaging public investment

World

HANOI (Reuters) – Police in Vietnam arrested two former information ministers on Saturday on suspicion of mismanaging public investment, they said on their website.

Nguyen Bac Son and Truong Minh Tuan were arrested on suspicion of mismanagement and violations regarding the use of such investment, they said.

Communist-ruled Vietnam is undergoing a major corruption crackdown that has sent a politburo member to prison and many other senior officials to jail or trials in a wide range of sectors.

The Supreme People’s Procuracy issued a prosecution order for Son and Tuan on Saturday for “violations of regulations on management and use of public investment capital that cause serious consequences,” the police said.

The news comes as the world’s media descend on Hanoi for the second summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un scheduled on Feb. 27-28, following the two leaders’ historic June meeting in Singapore.

Son was Vietnam’s information minister from 2011 to 2016 and Tuan held the position from 2016 to last year when he was suspended for mismanagement at state telecoms firm MobiFone.

The Communist Party’s inspection committee found MobiFone, one of Vietnam’s top three mobile carriers by subscription, overpaid for a 95 percent stake in a loss-making pay TV provider.

MobiFone bought the stake in private pay TV provider Audio Visual Global JSC for nearly 8.9 trillion dong ($386.1 million) in late 2015. Several senior information ministry officials and MobiFone executives were arrested in this case.

Reporting by Mai Nguyen; Editing by Clarence Fernandez

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