Resettlement, School Tuition Fees and Food Hygiene Top the Agenda

On Tuesday, administrative reforms, resettlement, school tuition fees and food hygiene were just some of the issues raised in a hot debate during the 11th session of the seventh-term Ho Chi Minh City People’s Council.

A HCMC People's Council deputy raises his opinions at the meeting on July 3

On the first day of the session, deputies listened to reports on the city’s socio-economic situation and other issues that have affected the city over the past six months.

“2007 is the year of economic reforms; however, the report does not mention much about it”, a deputy raised his concern. Many projects in District 10 have been progressing rather slowly due to low compensation prices for inhabitants and prolonged procedures, he said.

Sharing the same view, Deputy Huynh Cong Hung said that the suspension of drainage projects is wasting money, badly affecting traffic and transport and must be dealt with quickly.

Some deputies blamed delays in site clearance on the unreasonable compensation prices for those people relocated from their homes. “Are we paying so much attention on the GDP index rather than environmental pollution, congestion, drainage, clean water supply, etc?” a deputy asked.

Relating to resettlement,  Vice-Chairwomen of the HCMC Fatherland Front Committee Vo Thi Dung said that at present only 47% of relocated households have been arranged, while the city set itself a target of 91%.

“I propose that the city quickly provides new houses for those people”, she said.

Some deputies said that changes in resettlement projects, inconsistent construction of resettlement infrastructure, and degrading apartment blocks also worry the people.

Therefore, the city should apply stricter regulations on resettlement so that relocated inhabitants could have better houses, they said.

Discussing the HCMC People’s Committee report on the adjustment of school tuition, Deputy Nguyen Duc Nghia said if the city increases the cost of tuition, many poor pupils would have to quit school.

“We cannot judge the quality of schools by their tuition fees. It is a wrong concept!” he said.

Many deputies shared the shame view with him, even saying that pupils in state-run schools should be exempt from tuition fees.

Following the petitions of deputies in the group discussions, Deputy Pham Minh Tri proposed that the council should not approve the report on tuition fees.

Many councilors showed their concern on food hygiene, an issue that was discussed at the council’s meetings two or three years ago.

A deputy said the city should establish a specific body on food hygiene, because the Department of Health had not proven responsible enough to control food safety following the recent soy sauce scandal.

Related article:
City Council Convenes

By Tran Toan, Tuan Son – Translated by Thuy Hang

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