Ho Chi Minh City promises providing clean water to 100 percent of households by the end this year, said the city People’s Council chairwoman Nguyen Thi Quyet Tam on Saturday.
|Officials inspect water quality at Thu Duc water supply plant (Photo: SGGP)|
Vo Van Ho from Binh Hung Hoa ward, Binh Tan district said that many households in the ward including his family were using drilled wells because there was no tap water pipe.
Most of the drilled wells have been polluted and smelly for the last three years but local people have no choice besides using them for daily activities, he said.
Some have to ask for tap water from their neighbors while some buy bottled water to do the cooking, he added.
The issue is prevalent in suburb areas, where people have to use polluted drilled water or canal water.
According to the Department of Transport, over 1.5 million out of 1.87 million households in the city are accessible to clean water. About 358,351 others have to take water from drilled wells, rains and canals in outskirt districts.
Water quality has been tested substandard at 1,400 spots in seven outlying districts including Binh Chanh, Hoc Mon, Cu Chi, Nha Be, Binh Tan, Thu Duc and 12, the department reported. The water quality standards are set by the Ministry of Health.
HCMC needs as much as VND5 trillion (US$229.3 million) to provide 100 percent of households with clean water this year. Therefore, it has called on investment from individuals and organizations for the program.
The city has also permitted Saigon Water Infrastructure Corporation to invite private investors to carry out the program in Cu Chi district in the phase 2016-2019.
HCMC Infrastructure Investment Joint Stock Company, Saigon Clean Water Business and Investment Joint Stock Company, and Phu My Vinh Construction and Investment Company have proposed to implement some projects with a total capacity of 300,000 cubic meters a day.
The program has faced with difficulties in human resources and capital, forcing the city to apply different measures in order to get the target by the end of this year, said HCMC People’s Committee Deputy Chairman Nguyen Huu Tin.
For instance, they would build water supply and distribution networks to provide water to an extra of 129,700 households, install a maximum of 1,500 water tanks and water treatment facilities in areas inaccessible to tap water.
Whatever water sources would be provided, their quality must meet the Health Ministry’s quality standards and price must be same at VND5,300 a cubic meter, Mr. Tin added.