HA NOI (VNS)— About 25 water supply plants in northern midland Phu Tho Province's Yen Lap District have been out of operation for several years due to lack of management and maintenance, leaving hundreds of local residents scrambling to find water.
No-one was responsible for the plants, said Hoang Tien Quy, Thuong Long Commune Party Secretary. Two of them, servicing 540 households, came into operation in 2003 but several years later they stopped operating because their filters, storage tanks and pipelines broke and were never repaired.
Commune resident Trieu Phu Vi said households were having to look for other sources of water, such as springs and from relatives in other communes, which involved many hours of hard work each day.
Residents in 12 other communes faced the same problem. Trieu Van Lien, chairman of Nga Hoang Commune's People's Committee, said pipes carrying water to each household were broken.
Local authorities said no one was responsible for managing the water supply infrastructure.
The State had installed the systems but had not made provisions for their management. So, localities had no legal right to repair the works.
Phung Manh Dat, Thuong Long Commune Party Deputy Secretary, said residents themselves had refused to contribute to repair work. Maintaining the system would have cost each household just VND200-300 per cubic metre of water but they refused to pay.
Dao Kim Phuong, deputy head of the district's Agriculture Department, said local authorities and residents themselves were to blame for water system breaking down.
He said the district was going to draw up specific management regulations requiring the participation of residents in maintaining the works.
He said the district has just found VND3.2 billion ($152,000) in funds to fix eight water supply works. — VNS