Published: 18/05/2011 05:00



President Ho Chi Minh’s birthday celebrated

Many activities have been held across the country to celebrate the 121 st birthday of President Ho Chi Minh (May 19).

On May 16, the Hue city Senior High-School, where President Ho Chi Minh and other brilliant leaders of the country used to study, held a ceremony to mark the beloved President’s birth anniversary.

Teachers and students of the school expressed their determination to follow the moral example of President Ho Chi Minh and continue holding onto the school’s tradition. The Hue School has generated generations of outstanding persons for the country.

The same day, the Ho Chi Minh City Chapter of the Vietnam Union of Friendship Organisations held a workshop on President Ho Chi Minh’s life, career.

Meanwhile, the Sai Gon Women Entrepreneurs’ Club held an art performance to celebrate President Ho Chi Minh birthday, during which it raised nearly 200 million VND to support poor students in the city.

Food safety regulations still violated

During the on going ‘Month of Action for Food Safety and Hygiene 2011’ launched throughout Ho Chi Minh City, tens of cooking processing companies and many toxic additives have been found in the market.

Nguyen Thi Huynh Mai, deputy chief of the city Department of Food Hygiene, said health inspectors’ tested 23 samples and found additives in three of them. Watermelon seeds and chilly sauce were found to contain a cancerous substance called Rhodamine B, which is a banned food additive in Vietnam as it does not decompose and damages the liver and kidneys.

Meanwhile, inspectors from the city Department of Health discovered many irregularities by violators when paying unscheduled visits to food processing companies.

Dr. Pham Thi Kim Binh, acting chief inspector, said health inspectors’ had suspended operations of six firms that provide processed food for workers in industrial parks along with bottled water. Many other companies will also face penalties as they use contaminated food, banned preservatives and unhygienic processing procedures.

Health inspectors also paid visits to the wholesale market Kim Bien that sells various additives. Shop assistants said they procure products from various sources. The inspectors continued to trace the source back to the production companies. Two manufacturing companies Hong A Ltd. Co in district 11 and Minh Anh Ltd. Co in district Tan Phu said they imported materials to make additives.

However, the inspection team discovered that Hong A Company did not have a certificate of food hygiene and safety. Health authorities in the city have suspended all operations of the Hong A Additive Ltd. Company with immediate effect.

Viet Nam Airlines opens Ha Noi-Kuala Lumpur route

Vietnam Airlines will open non-stop flights from Ha Noi to Kuala Lumpur from June 16, according to an official of Vietnam airline.

There will be seven flights per week, bringing to 21 the number of flights per week from Viet Nam to Malaysia.An Airbus A321 will depart from Ha Noi at 2.55pm and depart KL at 6.55pm (KL time) with a flight time of three hours.

As a promotion, customers who book tickets before June 16 for trips between June 16-July 16 would pay VND2.508 million (US$120) plus taxes and fees, the airline said. Viet Nam Airlines will also increase four flights a week on its Ha Noi-Singapore route, to now total 11 flights a week from June 16. And from July 16, it will add seven flights a week to its Ha Noi-Bangkok route bringing the total to 14 flights a week.

Further more , a domestic Can Tho-Con Dao route will open from June 1 with four flights a week – Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. The first 800 passengers to book for trips in June will pay VND 600,000 ($29) plus taxes and fees for the round trip.

Viet Nam Airlines now has a total of 37 domestic and 45 international routes.

Woman arrested for throwing son, nephew into well

Police in the Central Highlands province of Dak Lak yesterday arrested a 31-year-old woman for allegedly killing her son and nephew by throwing them into a well Monday.

But they said Nguyen Thi Huong of Ea Pal Commune, Ea Kar District, showed signs of mental disorder.

Tran Quoc Tuan, her husband, told the police that at 6:30 am Monday Huong asked him for some money to take their four-year-old son Tran Quoc Bao and six-year-old nephew Mai Van Do to an ice-cream shop.

Huong then reportedly took them across a coffee plantation behind their house, and threw the two children one by one into a well there.

Some neighbors who accidentally saw her reported to the district police. But by the time officers arrived at the scene, the boys were dead.

They arrested Huong who later admitted to the killings.

But investigators said that when they asked her why she killed the boys, Huong answered in a vague and confused manner as if suffering from some mental disorder.

The district police have handed over the case to the provincial police.

Young doctors to be honoured

The 3rd Young Doctors festival will be held on Uncle Ho’s 121st birthday (May 19) to honour 80 excellent young doctors.

This was announced at a press conference jointly held by the Vietnam Youth Federation and the Vietnam Young Doctors’ Association in Hanoi on May 17.

The festival will feature a variety of events such as the “Humane Journey for Community Health” programme, a seminar on building friendly hospitals, a forum to encourage young doctors to follow Uncle Ho’s teachings, and a photography exhibition.

The “Humane Journey for Community Health” programme will be held simultaneously in 10 provinces and cities across the country with the participation of 3,500 young doctors who will provide free health check-ups and medicine, and present gifts to people in remote and disadvantaged areas.

The programme also aims to present medical equipment to 10 clinics in Quang Binh and Ha Tinh provinces and encourage medical students to donate blood.

Farmers in 6 provinces get rice from government

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung yesterday signed a decision granting 11,657 tons of rice from the national reserve to drought-hit farmers who are suffering in the period between two crops.

Of this, 3,908 tons is meant for Nghe An Province, 2,049 tons for Thanh Hoa, 2,000 tons for Quang Binh, 1,800 tons for Quang Tri, 1,500 tons for Thua Thien-Hue, and 400 tons for Gia Lai.

The people’s committees of the five provinces should ensure the relief reaches the right beneficiaries, the decision said.

On the same day the chairman of Thanh Hoa Province signed off on a program to distribute the rice to farmers facing hunger in the period until the next crop.

Each beneficiary will get 15 kg.

A week ago farmers in Gia Lai and four other provinces – Kon Tum, Yen Bai, Ha Giang, and Lao Cai – received 4,995 tons of rice.

Smoking causes poverty, say experts

Smoking is one of the major causes of losses for every nation’s economy, medical experts said at a press briefing in HCMC on Monday on the fight against smoking in Vietnam.

Smoking causes a loss of US$500 billion for the world’s economy each year while in Vietnam, the Ministry of Health said, the amount of money that Vietnamese smokers spend annually has risen over the years, from VND5 trillion in 1998 to VND10.4 trillion in 2002 and VND14 trillion in 2007.

In a research project done by the Hanoi School of Public Health, the amount spent on three of 25 smoking-related diseases is over VND2 trillion per year and poor families in Vietnam spend 5% of their incomes on cigarettes.

“In poor families, the money spent on cigarettes is higher than the expenses for medical treatment and education. If they give up smoking, they can save money for their children’s education and foods,” said Tran Thi Tuyet Hanh, a representative of the school.

Nguyen Tuan Lam from the World Health Organization’s (WHO) office in Vietnam noted that two-fifths of the population with low income in Vietnam usually used much money for cigarettes each year. “If they quit smoking, 11% of poor households can come out of poverty,” he added.

According to the Vietnam Commercial University, if the money spent on cigarettes was used to buy other goods and services, it could help increase the country’s gross domestic product by VD600 billion.

As one of the 15 countries with a large percentage of smokers, Vietnam has over 15 million people smoking. “Each year in Vietnam, there are over 40,000 deaths caused by diseases related to smoking and the figure is expected to rise to 70,000 by 2030 if no action is taken to put smoking under control,” Lam said.

Dang Huy Quoc Thinh, deputy general director of the HCMC-based Oncology Hospital, said, “Among 10 popular types of cancer in Vietnam, four are related to smoking, mostly lung cancer with 15,000 new cases detected a year.”

WHO forecasts by 2020, the number of smoking-caused deaths in the world will be more than that caused by HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and traffic accidents combined.

A Vietnam Tobacco Control Program report says local cigarette production has been on the increase. In 1999, Vietnam produced two billion tobacco packs, and the figure doubled to four billion in 2007.

Luong Ngoc Khue, office manager of the Vietnam Tobacco Control Program under the Ministry of Health, told the Daily on the sidelines of the press briefing that Vietnam did not have a law imposing sanctions against behaviors related to smoking.

“The Ministry of Health is just drafting a law designed to deal with the harm caused by smoking. The draft will go before the Government late this year before it could be passed into law by 2012.”

Lam of the WHO office said the low tax imposed on tobacco producers in Vietnam had led tobacco manufacturing to flourish. Tobacco makers in Thailand turn out two billion packs of cigarette and pay US$1.5 billion in taxes while those in Vietnam make five billion packs but pay total taxes of a mere US$500 million.

14 percent of gay men are HIV positive

Over 14 percent of gay men in Vietnam are HIV positive, according to statistics released by the Ministry of Health at a conference yesterday.

According to another study released at the conference on how to reduce discrimination against gay men held by the Vietnam Administration of HIV/AIDS Control and the United States Agency for International Development, because of discrimination from society and family, gay men can hardly access safe sex practice programs and this increases HIV infection among them.

Dong Nai Police seizes rotten suckling pigs

The Dong Nai Police yesterday seized a bus carrying 400 rotten suckling pigs from Quang Nam Province to Ho Chi Minh City.

The police stopped the bus at Vung Tau Crossroads in Bien Hoa City and found the pigs as well as 50kg of rotten and smelly pig fat and skin.

The 35-year-old driver Pham Van Vo said he was hired to carry the meat to An Suong Bus Station in HCMC.

Bomb threat prankster to be fined $725

The Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam (CAAV) has decided to impose a fine of VND15 million (US$725) on a Frenchman who joked that he was carrying a bomb as he boarded a Vietnam Airlines plane at Tan Son Nhat Airport in Ho Chi Minh City last Saturday.

The Southern Airport Authority will inform Mariano Francois Xavier Jean Agostini of the fine this morning, said Nguyen Trong Thang, Chief Inspector of CAAV.

Before his flight from HCMC to central Da Nang City, Agostini, 27, told a Vietnamese passenger that there was a bomb in his handbag.

Another French passenger overheard him and reported to the crew.

The flight, which was scheduled to leave at 12:45, was then delayed until 15:15 and all of the 180 passengers were evacuated to the airport’s terminal.

Airport securities then searched Agostini’s bag and the plane but did not find any bomb.

Thang said if the plane had been on the runway or had already taken off, the fine would be heavier, up to VND30 million ($1,450).

Century-old tree in downtown HCMC falls

A century-old tree on Dong Khoi Street in downtown Ho Chi Minh City unexpectedly fell to the ground at 6:10 p.m. on Tuesday.

There hasn’t been any report of human casualties or damage.

HCMC Green Tree and Park Company said the tree whose roots had been decayed was a Peltophorum pterocarpum, or Yellow Flamboyant, tree with the trunk diameter reaching 0.6m.

Local authorities later blocked the road to remove the tree.

Three sentenced for life for counterfeiting money

3 out of the 14 defendants in a counterfeit money ring in Ho Chi Minh City were sentenced to life imprisonment by the municipal People’s Court yesterday while the others received from one to ten years in prison.

The three sentenced to life are Vu Van Nghiem from Hanoi, and Nguyen Van Khuyen, and Hoang Thi Ha from HCMC.

These three were found to play the key roles in the ring, which sold counterfeit money supplied from China in HCMC.

In February 2008, Vu Van Nghiem and Nguyen Van Khuyen went to China and spent VND62 million (US$3,100) to buy counterfeit money.

The two brought the fake money back to HCMC and asked Hoang Thi Ha to find ways to sell it.

Ha had managed to sell VND70 million worth of counterfeit money to various buyers before one of them was arrested by the police. The ring was busted later.

Vietnamese association in Norway makes debut

The Vietnam Association has made debut in Oslo, Norway with the participation of a large number of Overseas Vietnamese.

The association was set up to nourish and develop Vietnamese culture in Norway and to organise exchanges among Vietnamese people and boost their integration into Norwegian society.

Addressing the launch ceremony, Chairman Pham Thanh Pha expressed his hope that the association will become a community house for the Vietnamese community in Oslo and Norway .

Vietnamese Ambassador Ta Van Thong said the establishment of the association marked the successful integration of Vietnamese people in Norway .

The diplomat also expressed his hope that the Vietnamese community would contribute to the development of the local country as well as Vietnam.

VN discusses anti-malaria drug resistance

Vietnamese Health Minister Nguyen Quoc Trieu discussed with regional counterparts the emergence of resistance to artemisinin, one of the key anti-malaria drugs, in Geneva on May 16.

The discussions, with the Lao, Myanmar, Thai, Cambodian, and Chinese health ministers, and President of the Bill & Melinda Gates Fund Bill Gates were held on the sidelines of the 64 th session of the World Health Assembly (WHA).

WHA is the highest decision-making body of the World Health Organisation (WHO).

The newly-emerging resistance to artemisinin could spark a potentially catastrophic situation that would make the world lose its best treatment against malaria.

Also on May 16, Minister Trieu sent a letter to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, underlining the Vietnamese government’s support for the global strategy for maternal and child healthcare launched last September.

He delivered a speech at the WHA’s 64 th session on May 17.

One dead, four hospitalized for alcohol poisoning

Five people in Phung Hiep District, Hau Giang Province developed symptoms of alcohol poisoning after drinking a few small cups of alcohol on Sunday night. Three of them were taken to Can Tho Central General Hospital, but one died on the way.

Dr. Duong Thien Phuoc, from the Emergency Department of Can Tho Central General Hospital, yesterday said the hospital was treating two patients, Nguyen Van Uol, 59, and Duong Van Dong, 31, for alcohol poisoning.

Both have developed such symptoms as trembling, convulsions, vomiting, fatigue, unstable blood pressure, and aberrant pulse rate.

After initial treatment, the two have partly recovered. However, they are still being given further treatment and remain under hospital observation, Dr. Phuoc said.

Another victim was T.M.D., 39, who died on the way to the hospital, he said.

The three patients have been transferred to the hospital from a clinic in Phung Hiep District.

Two other patients, Duong Minh Tiet, 60, and Duong Van Cu, 36, had been discharged from the clinic for treatment at home due to their less serious conditions.

The victims said on May 16, they bought about 250 ml of herbal liquor and 750 ml of white alcohol and then mixed them up. They later added some Chinese traditional medicine to it.

A moment after drinking a few of cups of the self-concocted wine while eating rice gruel with pork, all of them felt dizzy and very tired, they said.

Pregnant woman stabbed 40 times by husband

A woman in her sixth month of pregnancy is being treated in a hospital in Hanoi after getting 40 slashes and stabs from her husband who was a paranoiac patient. Doctors have yet to know what impact the assault might have on her unborn baby.

At 14 pm on May 15, Nguyen Thi Kim Dung, 29, was stabbed by her husband, Dao Hai Thien, also 29, at their home in Tho Quan Ward, Dong Da District, Hanoi.

Hearing her terrible screams, a neighbor called the local police, who soon arrived and found Thien dragging his wife, with blood covering many parts of her body, from inside the house to the front.

Thien then continuously slashed and stabbed her with two knives.

The police advised Thien to lay down the knives and let the woman go, but he pointed a knife to Dung’s neck and said he would kill her if anyone came near to him.

Suddenly, he pushed the woman down to the ground and then used the knife to cut his penis, to the astonishment of the policemen.

Two policemen rushed to Thien and one of them was slashed in the arm before they could subdue him.

The police then took both Dung and Thuan to hospital for emergency aid.

Besides a wound in his penis, Thuan had previously injured himself during his attack on his wife.

The police seized four knives on the scene.

Yesterday evening, Dung’s health condition was slightly better but she still was very weak and could not talk, said Lieutenant Colonel Do Van Thang, head of the Tho Quan ward police.

Doctors had yet to give any comments on the consequences of the attack on the unborn baby, Thang said.

Meanwhile, Thuan had recovered from his injuries. He told the police that he had not understood why he could attack his wife so cruelly. “We love each other very much.”

Thien had been a painting teacher at a primary school until April 2005, when he began developing abnormal behaviors, his relatives told the police.

Bach Mai Hospital confirmed that Thien had suffered from paranoia and depression. He was once treated at the hospital for 2 months, the hospital said.

After getting married, he stopped taking medicines for his mental disorder, his relatives said.

The marital life of the couple had been smooth until the day of the incident, according to Thien’s relatives.

The couple had lived together with Thien’s parents, who were absent at the time Thien assaulted his wife.

8 railway bridges to be built in June

Eight railways bridges will be built next month by local and Japanese contractors as part of a large-scale project developed by the Vietnam Railway Corporation.

The bridges are part of a project that aims to enhance the capacity and safety of railway transport on the Hanoi-Ho Chi Minh City route at a total investment of 2.471 trillion (US$119.7 million).

The investment will be sourced from Japan’s Official Development Aid (ODA) and the Vietnamese government’s reciprocal capital.

The eight bridges include Cua Rao, Thanh Luyen, Loc Yen, Tan Duc, Khe Net, Do Vang, Minh Le, and Ngan Son, which will be located on the north-south railway system.

The bridges, and a number of related sub-works, will be constructed by a partnership of contractors between a Vietnamese company, Civil Engineering Construction Corporation No. 1 (CIENCO 1), and two Japanese companies, Taisei Construction Company (TAISEI) and Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co. Ltd. (MES).

Upon completion in about 30 months, the bridges will increase transport capacity, improve railway safety, and shorten the travel time of north-south trains.

Farmer sues government for $175,000 for shrimp cull

A shrimp breeder in Thua Thien-Hue Province has filed a suit against district authorities for forcing him to destroy his stocks two years ago due to an erroneous conclusion his shrimp spread disease.

However, they claim he moved the shrimp to another place and did not destroy them.

Nguyen Xuan Hoa of Phu Loc District wants damages of VND3.6 billion (US$175,000) from the district People’s Committee.

In his complaint to the Phu Loc District People’s Court, he said he had raised black tiger shrimp and white-legged shrimp on two hectares of land in June 2009.

In July that year the Committee had fined him VND3 million (US$1,450) for alleged violations of shrimp-breeding regulations.

A month later, the Committee forced him to destroy his stocks saying his white-legged shrimp had spread diseases to other varieties of shrimp in the district and damaged the environment.

Hoa had lodged a complaint with the province People’s Committee.

A year later it had issued a decision saying the district committee was wrong to fine Hoa and force him to destroy his shrimp.

It had also ordered the district authorities to revoke their decision and recompense Hoa in accordance with the Law on State Compensation Responsibility.

But last month the Phu Loc People’s Committee refused to pay the compensation, claiming Hoa never destroyed the shrimp.

Nguyen Thanh Ha, its chairman, told Tuoi Tre: “When we told Hoa to destroy his shrimp, we did not know how many he raised. Hoa actually moved all the shrimp out before the decision could be executed. Therefore, it caused him no loss.”

Bremen liner brings 750 visitors to Vietnam

The Saigontourist Travel Services Co. on May 17 welcomed the luxury cruise liner Bremen of Germany on its first voyage to Vietnam , with 750 tourists aboard.

The holidaymakers, mainly German nationality holders, are scheduled to make a seven-day trans-Vietnam tour that will bring them to Ho Chi Minh City , Da Nang , Hai Phong and Ha Long.

The visitors will call at Cu Chi tunnel in HCM City and My Tho city in the Mekong Delta province of Tien Giang . On May 20, they will visit the central city of Da Nang , and then the World Heritage Site of My Son, the former imperial capital of Hue and the ancient town of Hoi An.

The tourists will go on a sightseeing tour of the well-known Ha Long Bay after visiting the northern port city of Hai Phong and the capital city of Hanoi .

Since the beginning of this year, Saigontourist has served more than 26,000 holidaymakers travelling to Vietnam by sea, most of them coming from the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Australia and Japan.

Source: Tuoi Tre/VNA/SGGP/SGT/ND/TN

Provide by Vietnam Travel

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