Xi Jinping was granted a third term as president of China on Friday after a meteoric climb to become the nation’s most powerful leader in centuries.
After Xi secured another five years as leader of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in October, the appointment was approved by China’s rubber-stamp parliament.
The 69-year-old Xi has since dealt with massive opposition to his zero-Covid policy and the many deaths that resulted from its abandonment.
The National People’s Congress (NPC), a meticulously orchestrated affair that will also name Xi supporter Li Qiang as the new premier, avoided those topics this week.
Xi was unanimously elected to a third term as president of China and to the position of head of the Central Military Commission on Friday.
For the historic vote, the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, a vast state structure on the edge of Tiananmen Square, was decorated with red carpets and banners. A military band played background music.
All 2,952 votes had been cast in favor of giving Xi another term in power, according to the final results, which were displayed on a digital monitor at the edge of the stage.
Following the news, delegates fervently pledged their commitment to the Chinese constitution as a sign of loyalty and consensus.
Xi put his left hand on a red leather copy of China’s constitution while raising his right fist.
He swore, promising to carry out his responsibilities honestly and diligently. “I swear to be loyal to the constitution of the People’s Republic of China, to uphold the authority of the constitution, to perform my statutory obligations, to be loyal to the motherland, to be loyal to the people,” he said.
He pledged to create a wealthy, strong, democratic, civilized, harmonious, and glorious modern socialist country in the oath, which was broadcast live on state television across the country.