|National figure: Prime Minister Pham Van Dong visits a high-yield rice field in the northern province of Nam Ha in 1969. — VNA/VNS Photo Duc Nhu
HA NOI (VNS) — Former Prime Minister Pham Van Dong devoted his life to the revolutionary cause of the nation, to building the Party and strengthening the state apparatus, Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc said yesterday at a ceremony in central province of Quang Ngai to mark the 110th birthday of the former leader and great culturist.
The ceremony was held in Mo Duc District of Quang Ngai where Dong was born. The event, which was broadcast live yesterday on VOV TV (a nationwide television channel operated by radio the Voice of Viet Nam), honoured the great contributions of the late Prime Minister to the country's revolutionary cause and development.
"Prime Minister Dong is a shining example from whom we should learn so as to continue his revolutionary cause and go firmly along the socialist path to the objectives chosen by the Party," Phuc said.
To celebrate the occasion, Party General Secretary Nguyen Phu Trong and other State and Party leaders planted trees at the Pham Van Dong Memorial complex. The Government Office, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other organisations and individuals also presented memorabilia owned by the late Prime Minister to the Quang Ngai authorities.
Pham Van Dong was born in 1906 in Duc Tan Village in Mo Duc District of Quang Ngai.
He began his revolutionary activities in the students' patriotic movement when he was 18.
Two years later, in 1926, he participated in a training course held by Nguyen Ai Quoc – later President Ho Chi Minh – in Guangzhou, southern China, and was admitted to the Viet Nam Revolutionary Youth Association.
He returned to Sai Gon, now HCM City, after attending the youth association's congress in Hong Kong and soon after was arrested by the French for his revolutionary activities and sent to the Con Dao prison island for 10 years.
Freed in 1936, Dong travelled to Ha Noi and in 1940 was admitted to the Communist Party of Indochina.
He held the highest distinction awarded by both the Party and the State, the Order of the Gold Star.
The former leader's talent for and contribution to foreign affairs manifested themselves during the many stages of Viet Nam's revolution. He made an important contribution to international solidarity, asking for support and sympathy from friendly countries to aid Viet Nam's national liberation cause, as well as the protection and development of the country.
International friends respected and admired Dong, considering him one of the national heroes who had the greatest impact in Viet Nam during the 20th century.
The former leader had also been a great educator and culturist. He always used his knowledge of the national culture as well as humanism in revolutionary activities.
Dong died in May 2000 and was prime minister from 1955 to 1987. At the time of his death at age 94, he had devoted 75 years of his life to patriotism and the revolution. — VNS