Installing water meters at households in Doi Mỹ Khánh in HCM City’s outlying Cần Giờ District. — Photo www.sggp.org.vn
HCM CITY — The HCM City water supply sector in recent years has upgraded its distribution systems that supply clean water to locals, but some localities in outlying Cần Giờ District still lack enough clean water for daily use.
According to Cần Giờ Water Supply Enterprise under the state-owned Sài Gòn Water Supply Corporation (Sawaco), nearly 19,200 households in the district have access to clean water directly or indirectly.
Of the figure, more than 1,670 households directly receive clean water supplied by Sawaco through pipelines, while more than 12,970 households use clean water through water supply stations.
About 4,500 households in the district have to get water from indirect sources such as water transported by barges, which can be less safe.
Phạm Văn Hùng, a resident in the district’s Lý Nhơn Commune, told Sài Gòn Giải Phóng (Liberated Sài Gòn) newspaper that locals still use water from barges, so the water quality is not good.
“I have to collect rainwater during the rainy season and store it to use,” he said.
He also uses tap water, but there is not enough water for his family to use. Sometimes there is no water for more than half a month, so he has to buy clean water at a high price.
“I heard that the water supply company will install pipelines and provide clean water soon. I'm glad, but I haven't seen it for many years,” Hùng said.
Before 2011, a state-owned water supply company and private supply stations carried out water supply in the district.
There were more than 30 water supply stations at that time which use water supplied from the barges so their water supply cannot meet the demand of local people.
Sawaco has invested VNĐ254 billion (US$11 million) in 22 projects to develop water distribution networks in communes in the district.
Of these, 14 projects have been completed and eight projects are under construction.
However, water supply in the district still faces many problems.
The pipelines were installed close to local houses in many areas, but Sawaco could not supply water to households due to complicated procedures.
The district now has 16-staffed units and some points that supply clean water to local people. Most of them have agreed to hand over the water supply to Sawaco, but they need support to find other jobs.
The water supply systems at the existing stations are mostly old and in bad conditions, so water supply cannot be maintained for 24 hours.
Water transported by barges also poses a high risk of pollution. The quality of water does not meet hygiene standards.
The city also has to compensate water supply stations that get water from the barges.
To ensure all residents in the district have access to safe water, infrastructure for water distribution networks is needed, and old water supply stations should be replaced.
Providing support to water supply stations that will be handed over to Sawaco should also be considered. — VNS