Announcing Pham Thai Ha’s arrest, Police chief To Lam decides to finish political career of Top legislator Vuong Dinh Hue

On April 22, Vietnam’s state-controlled media simultaneously reported “Assistant to the Chairman of the National Assembly Pham Thai Ha was arrested.” Previously, rumors of his arrest appeared right after top legislator  Vuong Dinh Hue returned from a long visit to China.

Ha – Deputy Head of the National Assembly Office cum Assistant to the Chairman of the National Assembly, is considered the key to Hue for the past 20 years, since Hue was still the State Auditor General. Internal information said that Ha was both the connection between local leaders and National Assembly Chairman Hue, and the person who took the project and gave it to Nguyen Duy Hung – Chairman of Thuan An Group. In addition, internal information also said that Ha received bribes of up to VND2 trillion ($80 million) from highway projects and coastal works.

Ha was arrested on charges of “abusing position, power, and influencing others for personal gain” according to Clause 4, Article 358, Criminal Code. Ha’s position is not powerful enough for contractors to hand over up to VND2 trillion. Thus, Ha’s “abuse of position and authority” can be understood as taking advantage of his boss’s position and authority.

Once the information about the arrest of the Assistant to the Chairman of the National Assembly was made public to the press, it seemed that Minister of Public Security General To Lam was determined to “end” Hue’s political career. Sources said that Hue’s resignation letter is still held in the Central Committee’s Commission for Inspection and has not been sent to the Politburo and the Party Central Committee. Hue did everything possible to keep this petition from being on the Politburo’s agenda. The purpose was to buy time to ask for help from China and General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong.

But General Lam is not naive. In order to neutralize Hue’s trick of buying time, he publicly announced the arrest information of Pham Thai Ha. If this information has not been published, it is possible that some force will intervene and force Lam to release Ha. However, once information is disclosed to the public, it is like “a glass of water spilled on the ground” which cannot be taken back.

An anonymous analyst assessed that Hue’s situation is irreversible, because Lam has carefully prepared all situations, including plan B, plan C… If Hue still does not want to surrender, Lam will continue to capture other backyards, causing Hue to lose in a painful and humiliating way. Some names have been released, including Bui To Minh – aka “Plastic” Minh, a business owner in the plastic manufacturing industry, headquartered in Long Bien – Hanoi.

Hue’s backyard does not only include Thuan An, so the more “stubborn” Hue is, the more favorable conditions for Lam to show off his strength. At that time, Lam had the opportunity to “deter” everyone who wanted to confront him.

Currently, Lam is in a winning position like splitting bamboo. With the tool of black files, Lam is to knock out the opponent’s backyard, then drag the mastermind down to the chair, is demonstrating its effectiveness. Vo Van Thuong has already “fallen from his horse” and in the near future, it will be top legislator Hue. In just over a month, Lam has broken two pillars of Vietnam’s Four Pillars. No one has ever done that and no one has done it that fast in the Party’s history, even Trong in his “golden time.”

On April 20, Bui Van Cuong – General Secretary of the National Assembly, sent a notice convening the 7th session of the 15th National Assembly to its delegates. According to the announcement, this session will open on May 20 and is expected to close on June 28. As usual, if there is a change in personnel, before the National Assembly meeting, the  Central Committee must meet to “finalize” positions of power, including vacant positions and positions that will be vacant. Thus, Hue only has 3 weeks to try to struggle, then everything must be clear to Lam.