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Disputes over land clearance delay river dredging project

Update: November, 19/2013 - 09:58
Slow land clearance has delayed a project to dredge a stretch of the Day River in Ha Noi's districts of Hoai Duc and Phuc Tho by five months.— Photo hanoimoi

HA NOI  (VNS) — Slow land clearance has delayed a project to dredge a stretch of the Day River in Ha Noi's districts of Hoai Duc and Phuc Tho by five months.

The project, worth VND349 billion (US$16.5 million), started in late 2008, and was set to reopen a 25.6km stretch in June.

However, over 2,600 households in Hoai Duc District's Duong Lieu Commune had not received compensation for nearly 4.3ha of land, Tran Anh Tu, head of the Agricultural Project Management Board under the capital Agriculture and Rural Development Department, told Ha Noi Moi (New Ha Noi) newspaper.

People were only entitled to compensation when their land was identified as agricultural land given by the State to households or individuals for long-term purposes, he said.

The Land Clearance Steering Committee organised a meeting last week to resolve the situation, but the People's Committee of Hoai Duc District failed to prepare full reports and recommendations, he said.

Ngo Manh Cuong, head of the Land Clearance Committee of Phuc Tho District, told Ha Noi Moi newspaper that six households, who owned over 5.100 square metres in Lien Hiep Commune, had not handed over their land to the project's contractor, although they had received compensation.

The reason for which seemed to be that compensation for local households was inconsistent, he said.

At first, each household was meant to receive compensation for each 13 square metres of land, but that changed to 9.5 square metres, he said.

According to the head of the district's Natural Resources and Environment Office, meetings had been held to resolve the problem, but a solution was yet to be found.

In a related move, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has ordered the Ha Noi People's Committee to speed up the progress of the project to reopen the river before the 2014 flood season between July and November. — VNS

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