BINH DUONG (VNS)— The start of the rainy season has sparked panic among hundreds of residents in Thu Dau Mot City's Phu Cuong Ward in southern Binh Duong Province, who fear their rickety houses are at risk of collapsing.
People are unable to repair their structurally unsound homes because of a heavily delayed building project in the area, and now worry that storms will place their houses in jeopardy.
Their concerns were heightened after a 48-year-old local was seriously injured early this week when his house suddenly collapsed.
Nguyen Van De, who required 20 stitches in his head, said, "At 2am, we had heavy rain and I could see the canvas roof of my house was weighed down with rainwater. After being shaken, it suddenly collapsed."
Since De's ordeal, Van Nguyet Anh, vice chairwoman of the ward's People's Committee said it has applied to the city for support for the victims.
De's house and around 370 houses are located on land that has been cleared in order to build a 21st century residential area in Phu Cuong Ward.
De added, "We could not repair or rebuild my house because my house is in the building project area."
Under a decision signed by the vice chairman of the provincial People's Committee Pham Hoang Ha, Tan Vu Minh Co Ltd was assigned to operate the project, which covers around 24 ha, after approval from the city People's Committee in 2008.
The project, worth about VND612 billion (US$29.4 million) was scheduled to finish in May 2012, but the company failed to meet this deadline.
Under a report released by the provincial People's Committee last week, only 26 per cent of the land has so far been cleared, while infrastructure building progress is only at 20 per cent.
A frozen real estate market and the company's lack of capital are major factors in the delay.
The provincial People's Committee plans to help the company by borrowing money from local banks to speed up the project's progress. — VNS