Viet Nam News
HCM CITY – Many construction works in HCM City designed to check soil erosion are running well behind schedule due to land acquisition and resettlement delays.
According to the Department of Transport, the number of places prone to erosion has increased with the onset of the rainy season to 40, with 23 of them being very vulnerable. But most of the works to mitigate the problem scheduled to be completed by January 1 this year have been delayed.
Nhà Bè District has started on building embankments in many areas, but the work has been tardy. For instance, construction of embankments in Mương Chuối and the Phước Lộc Bridge is incomplete with many households yet to be moved for land acquisition.
Facing similar delays are the Rạch Tắc – Bến Rô and Rạch Giồng projects on the Kinh Lộ River in Nhà Bè, works on the southern bank of the Sài Gòn River in Thủ Đức District and on the upper section of the Long Kiểng Bridge in Nhà Bè District.
These areas, especially the section of the left bank of the river from Bình Lợi Bridge, are densely populated, with many shops and eateries mushrooming in the area despite warnings.
An embankment has been built at the end of Road No 7 in Hiệp Bình Phước Ward, Thủ Đức, which was eroded in 2015.
Bùi Xuân Cường, director of the department, said delays in acquiring lands are the major difficulty.
The department and district authorities are responsible for putting up warning signs at the erosion-prevention work sites.
But despite the warnings, many people risk their lives, living and working in places that are highly vulnerable to collapsing, experts said.
Because of this authorities are keen on and have given top priority to these works.
Relevant authorities should have special mechanisms to speed up work at sites facing high risk of soil collapse, a spokesman for the transport department said.
The department has called on district authorities to speed up compensation payment to households affected by the projects and land acquisition.
It has also urged the city Department of Natural Resources and Environment to approve the compensation rates to be paid to the households.
Hà Thanh Sơn, deputy chief of the department’s marine transport division, said the city targets completing eight projects this year, and so the sites for them must be handed over to relevant agencies by July.
The city People’s Committee has instructed the department to forecast the soil erosion threats and measures in response and submit them this year.
It ordered district authorities and other relevant agencies to assess compensation rates and speed up anti-erosion works.VNS