The Vietnamese public is fed up with Communist Party members throwing lavish weddings at five-star hotels with hundreds of guests, prompting Party leaders in Hanoi to issue restrictions on such events and publicly criticize indulgence in luxury.
“There is still a part of the population, state officials and party members, including key leaders at all levels, who organize ostentatious, extravagant, wasteful weddings, stirring up the public opinion, negatively affecting the reputation of officials, party members," read a statement on the government website.
Opulent wedding parties are common in Vietnam, reported the Bangkok Post, with up to 1,000 guests not unusual.
"Vietnamese authorities are very good at proposing laws but whether the laws are applied and strictly obeyed is a different story," a 43-year-old Party member in Hanoi told the paper.
Now, the government has explicitly stated that weddings among Party officials or their close relatives should be limited to 300 guests per family and that weddings should be limited to one day of celebration and not held at luxury venues.
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“[T]he (Communist Party Central) Committee requested the authorities at all levels to continue to promote propaganda and mobilization of officials, Party members and the people to voluntarily, positively implement [a] civilized lifestyle, particularly in organizing weddings,” the statement added.
The public perception of Party members as part of an entitled elite, particularly in the capital Hanoi, has been fed by financial scandals and political corruption amid a slowing economy. GDP is expect to decline to 5.1 percent this year, down for the second straight year from 5.89 percent in 2011 and 6.78 percent the year before, according to the World Bank.
In Hanoi, there are around 340,000 party members out of the total 3.8 million members throughout Vietnam, BBC reported.