Canal encroachment violation remains unsolved
  • By Quoc Anh | dtinews.vn | June 15, 2017 03:00 PM
A HCM City canal has been largely encroached upon by real estate projects while the local authorities have claimed they were unaware of the situation.


Riviera Point Company illegally filled up 1,800 square metres of canal

According to the authorities of District 7, in 2012, Riviera Point Company illegally filled up 1,800 square metres of canal for their Riviera Point apartment building and shopping centre project.

Even though the project is located right behind the District 7 People's Committee's headquarters, they apparently did not see any evidence of the work. The situation was only discovered in 2013 by the State Audit Office of Vietnam.

On March 18, 2013, District 7 authorities asked agencies to deal with the encroachment. Two years later, the investors were asked to build a lake inside their project land to replace the encroached canal area.

However, director of Centre for Water Management and Climate Change, Ho Long Phi, disagreed with the solution. He said, "It's not in accordance with the laws and the principle. In order to make this case a deterrent, the investors must restore the canal. It's clear that they violated the regulations."

In last February, the HCM City People's Committee asked the district authorities to deal with the violation and determine individual responsibilities. However, nothing has been done.

The city authorities then backed the plan to build a new lake which must be 1.2 times larger than the encroached area.

On June 14, District 7 said they had just received the opinions from the Department of Planning and Architecture. After adjusting the planning, the district will reprimand the involved individuals.

Le Hoa Binh, chairman of District 7, said it took a long time to deal with the case because they were too rigid with the procedures.

Vo Van Hoan, head of the Office of the HCM City People's Committee, said District 7 was too slow to deal with this case which started in 2013. He asked the local authorities to monitor their areas more closely to react timely to violations. "This is a lesson. Building a new lake is only a band-aid solution," he said.

He went on to say that the process to determine and punish individuals was also slow as it had lasted for a year and a half year. He warned that this process must be taken seriously in order to deter other officials.

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