Beijing: A Chinese state news agency has suspended four employees, a report said, following a typographical slip that suggested President Xi Jinping was resigning.
The error came in a Friday story about a speech Xi gave during a China-Africa summit in Johannesburg last week.
Staff at the state-run China News Service switched two Chinese characters with similar sounds, accidentally changing the word in question to write that Xi`s remarks were a "resignation" not a "speech", Hong Kong`s South China Morning Post reported Sunday.
Some news sites published the report in its original form before later retracting it, the paper said.
Since Xi`s ascension to the head of the Communist Party in 2012, he has increasingly become the focus of fawning adulation by state media, leading some experts to say that a nascent cult of personality may be developing around him.
Last Friday, during his Africa trip, Xi`s name appeared in 11 out of 12 headlines on the front page of the Communist Party`s official newspaper, the People`s Daily.
"Praise for the glorious leadership of Xi Jinping is marquee coverage," David Bandurski, an expert on Chinese media at the University of Hong Kong, wrote in a recent post about the phenomenon, noting that the paper was mentioning the leader`s name at rates unseen since the era of Mao Zedong.