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The Vietnamese Fatherland Front (Vietnamese: Mặt Trận Tổ Quốc Việt Nam) founded February 1977 (merged Vietnamese Fatherland Front of North Vietnam, National Liberation Front of South Vietnam and Alliance of National, Democratic and Peace Forces of Việt Nam in the South Vietnam), is an umbrella group of pro-government "mass movements" in Vietnam, and has close links to the Communist Party of Vietnam and the Vietnamese government. It is an amalgamation of many smaller groups, including the Communist Party itself. Other groups that participated in the establishment of the Front were the remnants of the Viet Cong, the Vietnamese General Confederation of Labour, and the Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth League (aka the Hồ Chí Minh Youth). It also included the Democratic Party of Vietnam and Socialist Party of Vietnam, until they were disbanded in 1988 [1]. It also incorporates some officially sanctioned religious groups.

The Front is described by the Vietnamese government as "the political base of people's power." It is intended to have a significant role in society, promoting "national solidarity" and "unity of mind in political and spiritual matters." Many of the government's social programs are conducted through the Front. Recently, it has been given a role in programs to reduce poverty. The Front is also responsible for much of the government's policy on religion, and has the ability to determine which religious groups will receive official approval.

Perhaps more importantly, the Front is intended to supervise the activity of the government and of government organizations. Because the Front is based around mass participation and popular mobilization, it is seen as representative of the people, and both Vietnam's constitution and laws give it a special role. The Front has a particularly significant role in elections. Specifically, endorsement by the Front is generally required (in practice, if not in theory) to be a candidate for election. Almost all candidates are nominated by (and members of) the Front, with only a few "self-nominated" candidates avoiding the Front's veto. The Front's role in electoral nominations is mandated by law.

The current Chairman of the Presidium of the Vietnamese Fatherland Front is Mr. Huỳnh Đảm.

Chairman of the Vietnamese Fatherland Front since 1977:

Hoàng Quốc Việt (1977-1983), Huỳnh Tấn Phát (1983-1988), Nguyễn Hữu Thọ (1988-1994), Lê Quang Đạo (1994-1999), Phạm Thế Duyệt (1999-2008), Huỳnh Đảm (from 2008).

Formerly Front organisations

  • Vietnamese National Popular League (Hội Liên hiệp Quốc dân Việt Nam or Liên Việt), founded in 29 May 1946. Head of League: Huynh Thuc Khang (1946-1947), Bùi Bằng Đoàn (1947-1951).
  • Vietnamese National Popular Front (Mặt trận Liên Việt), founded 1951, merged Viet Minh and Lien Viet. Chairman: Tôn Đức Thắng
  • Vietnamese Fatherland Front (Mặt trận Tổ quốc Việt Nam), founded 1955 replaced Vietnamese National Popular Front. Chairman: Tôn Đức Thắng*
  • Alliance of National, Democratic and Peace Forces of Việt Nam, founded in 20 April 1968. Chairman: Trịnh Đình Thảo.

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