Published: 19/05/2011 05:00



Mobile rescue teams set up for flood hit areas

The Hanoi Department of Health (DOH) announced a project to establish mobile emergency teams to rescue people in flood-hit areas.

According to the project, each emergency team will include two doctors, two nurses, a driver and an ambulance vehicle. Mobile teams will be equipped with medication and medical equipment to respond to a crisis.

According to DOH, central hospitals will maintain two teams while district hospitals and specialized medical clinics will have one team each. Hospitals will provide the necessary first aid training to the rescue teams.

DOH also proposed various ways to respond to the next flood season. It planned to stockpile drugs and chemicals as well as raise awareness amongst people of the need to use clean water for daily chores and curb the spread of infectious diseases during the flood season.

District medical infirmaries will stockpile essential equipment, medicines and cookingstuffs for flood hit victims for at least 15 days.

The 2008 floods in Vietnam severely affected large areas of Hanoi after just three days of heavy rainfall. The rain began on October 30 for three long days and caused the worst floods in Hanoi since 1984.

Coach found responsible for flight disturbance

The Civil Aviation Administration of Vietnam (CAAV) Wednesday decided to fine national taekwondo coach Le Minh Khuong for disturbing a Vietnam Airlines flight last month.

In a statement signed by CAAV’s deputy head Lai Xuan Thanh last night, Khuong could be subject to a fine of up to VND3 million (US$145).

In a meeting with the CAAV Inspectorate yesterday morning, Khuong and his lawyer, Tran Thu Nam, disagreed with the decision.

Thanh said CAAV would continue to work with Khuong before determining the exact amount.

Earlier, Khuong accused Danang Airport security staffs of beating and humiliating him during a transit.

According to CAAV’s investigation report, Khuong’s VNA1169 fight from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City on April 18 made an emergency landing in Danang City due to bad weather.

After chief pilot Ivanov and chief of the cabin crew Trinh Thi Hoa denied the request of Khuong and his father to leave the plane because it would further delay the takeoff, Khuong began to shout and refused to return to his seat in the economy class section and occupied another passenger’s seat in the business class.

For safety reasons, the crew then decided to return to the terminal and report the case to Danang Airport’s securities.

Four officers later boarded the plane and asked Khuong to leave. As Khuong refused, he was forcibly removed from the plane.

In a statement, Tu Van Suu of Danang Airport Security Services Company said these officers did not assault Khuong.

CAAV reached the same conclusion, saying Khuong was treated in a proper manner.

The agency however said it would ask Vietnam Airlines to take discipline action against a ground staff at the airport who pointed a walkie-talkie at Khuong’s face.

Lawyer Tran Thu Nam, head of the Tin Viet Law Firm, previously told Nguoi Lao Dong that his client only wanted to clarify the incident.

“Khuong only wishes to establish what is right and what is wrong,” Nam said. “If Vietnam Airlines staffs are wrong, they must apologize.”

HCM City flood prevention efforts begin to pay off

Flood-prevention works undertaken recently in HCM City have begun to bear results in several inner city areas.

People living in Nguyen Thi Nho Street in Districts 6 and 11, Tran Binh Trong Street in District 5, Le Hong Phong Street in District 10, Pham The Hien Street in District 8, and Phan Dinh Phung and Dinh Tien Hoang streets in Phu Nhuan District used to dread the rains because their houses would be flooded.

But some flood-prevention projects completed last year have eased their misery.

Tran Quoc Tai, owner of a rice shop on Nguyen Thi Nho Street, said: “Since last year this street and the Cho Lon Passenger Bus Station area have not been flooded.”

Phan Chau Thuan, director of the HCM City Environmental Sanitation Project in the Nhieu Loc – Thi Nghe Basin, said a culvert system would be completed this year.

That would reduce the flooding caused by rain and river tides in Districts 1, 3, 10, Binh Thanh, Tan Binh, Phu Nhuan, and Go Vap, he said.

The city People’s Committee has ordered relevant departments and agencies to draw up a programme for 2011-15 focusing on improving sites that are prone to flooding.

It will include relocation of all illegal slums along canals by the end of next year.

It will also replace small old sewers on main streets with larger ones to prevent flooding in Districts 5, 6, 11, 12, Binh Tan, Tan Phu, Go Vap, and Binh Chanh.

The People’s Committee has also instructed relevant departments and agencies to speed up work on several ongoing projects to prevent flooding caused by high tides and heavy rains, including the second phase of the Water Environment Improvement Project in Ben Nghe – Tau Hu and Kenh Doi-Kenh Te Canals, dyke construction along Sai Gon River’s right bank, and dredging of Thu Dao, Ba Lon, Ong Lon, and other canals.

In 2009, there were 96 spots prone to flooding during heavy rain and 67 during high tide.

But last year only 50 streets were flooded.

Pension fund set up for 200 Thanh Oai farmers

About 200 farmers aged 60-80 in Ha Noi’s Thanh Oai District are to get an allowance of VND100,000 (US$5) a month from the Thanh Van Commune’s Welfare and Insurance Fund for Farmers.

Previously only farmers aged 80 years old and over received this allowance from the State while those aged 60-79 had to live off their children, commune People’s Committee chairman and director of the fund Tran Van Tuan said.

The commune has about 350 farmers aged 60-80.

Former farmer Nguyen Van Cu, 78, said the allowance was “an encouragement to old-aged people” while Phan Thi Khoe, 82, said it was pocket money, which she usually had to get from her children.

The fund, launched in March, is the brainchild of commune Party secretary Quang Van Thinh who had been asking the local authorities and people to support his idea for 15 years.

The fund is to be created by contributions of VND20,000 ($1) a month over 20 years from individual farmers, plus donations.

“That means a farmer who pays a total insurance of VND4.8 million ($240) over 20 years from age 40 will get VND100,000 ($5) a month from the time they reach 60,” Thinh said.

Those who paid a lump sum would get a discount of VND800,000 ($40).

Others aged 16-40 were also encouraged to contribute.

Because the fund had just begun, farmers already aged 60 and over would get the pension.

Thinh said that previously local farmers didn’t have faith in the fund, they just considered it as a credit activity.

Now they realised the fund was more important than that, he said.

The fund management board would increase the value of the fund and payouts and contributions were expected to increase along with inflation.

The payouts could be expected to reach VND300,000 ($15) a month in due course.

Viet Nam Farmers Association deputy head Nguyen Duy Luong said the same fund model had been launched in other provinces and cities and more were likely to follow.

There was now a need to set up firm rules to cover management of the funds, Luong said.

PM urges more effort to curb traffic accidents

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has ordered the National Committee on Transport Safety and relevant ministries and sectors to apply stronger measures in preventing traffic accidents across the nation.

Dung made the request during a meeting with members of the National Traffic Safety Committee and the ministries of Transport, Public Security and Health who met to discuss ways to lower the nation’s high rate of traffic accidents. Minister of Transport Ho Nghia Dung, who is also chairman of the Transport Safety Committee, said in the past three years the number of transport accidents reported nation-wide dropped by 5.4 per cent and fatalities fell by 13.2 per cent while injuries were reduced by 6 per cent.

“These gains are attributed to the implementation of various measures,” Dung said.

However, he added that while traffic accidents had reduced slightly, they were still unacceptably high.

“Too many accidents are still occurring due to various reasons, including motor riders not wearing helmets, drink driving and weak enforcement of traffic and transport safety laws,” he said.

Deputy Minister of Public Security Le Quy Vuong said that up to 80 per cent of accidents were the result of motorists or pedestrians not following simple rules.

Minister Ho Nghia Dung said it was imperative to impose higher fines on those who were caught violating traffic rules.

“Parallel with raising fines, we should conduct a census of motor vehicles on the road while raising people’s awareness about the transport safety law, particularly the campaign to wear safety helmets,” said Dung.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung took note of the reduction of transport accidents during the past three years and called on the ministries of Transport, Public Security and local governments to exert further efforts to make a breakthrough in curbing traffic accidents.

Participants attending the meeting included three Deputy Prime Ministers Nguyen Sinh Hung, Truong Vinh Trong and Hoang Trung Hai.

Ha Noi to promote rural industry

The Ha Noi People’s Committee plans to spend VND235 billion (US$11.7 million) on stimulating industry in rural areas during 2011-15, officials announced.

Hoang Xuan Thuy, director of the Ha Noi Industrial Promotion Centre, said from 2005-10, VND34.3 billion ($1.6 million) from the municipal budget was spent on programmes that aimed to stimulate industry. The city’s industrial manufacturing output increased by 16 per cent during this period.

More than 40,000 rural workers now have jobs, who account for 4 per cent of the municipal population. Meanwhile, the number of qualified workers in Ha Noi’s suburban districts has increased by 20 per cent.

Prosperity has also increased in urban areas. Every commune has access to electricity and 63 per cent of the city’s roads are paved. Thuy added that 80 per cent of households also have access to clean water.

Thuy said that from 2011-15, the city planned to increase industrial development by 18-22 per cent annually. By 2015, rural industrial output should account for 20-25 per cent of the city’s total output, he added. Industrial commodities make up 18 per cent of the city’s total output at the moment.

To meet its growth target, municipal authorities have launched seven industrial promotion programmes that include vocational and managerial training and science and technology consulting.

Over the next five years, the centre plans to provide vocational training to 25,000 workers.

The centre also plans to offer training courses to 8,500 managers.

Thuy added that the city would encourage enterprises to invest in renewing technology during the next five years.

Vietnam finance ministry says it’s been frugal

Vietnam’s Ministry of Finance on Tuesday said it has not bought any cars for seven years, once again rejecting allegations that it wanted government officials to use more expensive cars.

All of the cars at the ministry were transfered from other state offices and even the newest cars were manufactured in 2004, news website VnExpress cited the ministy as saying.

The Finance Ministry itself has never purchased any car, old or new, since 2005, it added.

Criticism emerged after the ministry announced a plan to raise the maximum value allowed for state office cars to VND1.1 billion (US$53,500) from VND800 million.

Many critics said now is not the time to allow government officials to switch to more expensive cars considering the whole country is trying to rein in inflation.

But the ministry has said the new ceiling does not mean the ministry wants to buy higher-end cars for state offices. The request was only made because car prices have been rising, it explained.

The ministry also noted that the new rule, if approved, will be applied to all state agencies and state-owned companies, not just the Finance Ministry.

Vietnam had 29,524 vehicles at state offices, worth VND13.3 trillion ($647 million), Hanoi Moi newspaper reported in March, citing the Public Property Management Department.

HCMC Police destroy weapons, prohibited toys

2,600 primitive weapons and 800 prohibited toys had been destroyed, the Ho Chi Minh City Police said yesterday.

The destroyed weapons included daggers, knives, scimitars, swords and ball guns.

Nguyen Van Dung, head of the PC64 unit which carried out the task, said the police had encouraged residents throughout the city to voluntarily hand in such weapons.

Vietnam gains successes in ensuring social welfare

Vietnam’s economic growth experienced a slowdown early this year as its Government moved to cool down its overheated economy in order to curb inflation and ensure social welfare, a Malaysian newspaper said.

The Chinese language newspaper Nanyang Siang Pau said in the context of inflation and rising good prices, the Vietnamese government has paid special attention to building a social welfare system in which job generation is considered an important task and one of the nation’s socio-economic development targets.

Vietnam’s Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung has also taken care of the life of workers in the country and overseas. The country has exerted its efforts to evacuate more than 10,000 migrant workers from chaotic Libya. The workers returning home ahead of schedule have been given assistance to work in another country, including Malaysia.

During his official visit to Malaysia, the PM emphasised continued labour cooperation with the nation, said the paper.

According to the newspaper, the Southeast Asian nation set a target of creating 1.6 million new jobs this year. In the first quarter of the year, the country generated jobs for 340,000 people, 17,590 of whom were sent abroad to work as guest workers.

Malaysia, a key market in the nation’s labour cooperation, received up to 20,000 Vietnamese guest workers in 2003.

Despite the global economic downturn, during the 2008-2010 period, Malaysia still ranked among the top five nations welcoming Vietnamese.

Reporter’s house attacked with manure-mixed oil

Two men threw two cans of oil mixed with manure into the house of Public Security Newspaper’s journalist Dang Ngoc Nhu in the Central Highlands City of Pleiku, Dak Lak Province Monday night.

Nhu was working at home at the time of the attack.

According to Nhu’s neighbors, some days before, two young men with long hair had come to ask where Phu was living and departed after they found nobody at home.

Dang Ngoc Nhu, who covers social issues for Public Security, has recently attracted public attention for his articles that exposed wrongdoings.

Hanoi resident injured by fallen power pole

A man was riding bicycle along 32 Street in Kieu Mai Commune in Hanoi this morning when a power pole suddenly collapsed and crushed him.

He was seriously injured and immediately hospitalized.

The road has been blocked since the accident.

Schools asked to formalize graduation ceremony

The Ho Chi Minh City Department of Education and Training (DOET) has sent a dispatch to its sub-bureaus to direct primary schools to organize festivals for parents and formal graduation ceremonies for 5th year students.

Under the dispatch, the Education and Training bureaus should direct primary schools to organize a festival to introduce itself to parents.

Small educational facilities need to hold large-scale festivals in teaching and learning activities and extra- curricular activities to create trust amongst parents and residents in the districts.

In addition, primary schools must conduct formal graduation ceremonies for fifth grade students to mark an important stage in a child’s life.

The management board and head teachers should give primary graduation certificates to each student.

Schools have to organize the ceremony in a solemn atmosphere so that it remains engraved in the child’s memory.

Rumor sparks cemetery land grab in Nghe An

Hundreds of residents in Dong Van Commune in the central province of Nghe An are rushing to grab land in the Dong Mountain Cemetery upon hearing a rumor that it will cost money to get a lot there.

Residents of Phu Xuan, Luan Phu, and Luan Phuong villages are using cow carriages to carry sand, bricks and cement up to the mountain to build brick walls around the lots they have grabbed to indicate their ownership.

Most have taken lots of about 100 square meters and some have even built fake graves inside the walls.

One villager said if he didn’t grab a piece now, he wouldn’t have a grave to lie in when he dies as a lot in this cemetery would cost VND1.5 million (US$75) in the future.

“Some even grabbed 2 or 3 lots to sell to others,” he said.

Tran Dinh Tuy, head of Dong Van Commune’s People’s Committee, said the villagers had taken around 15,000 square meters of land after hearing the rumor.

“We’ve asked them to stop this land grab and silence the rumor,” Tuy said.

Nguyen Doan Quy, head of Dung Town’s People’s Committee, said those who have built walls and fake graves would be fined.

“They’ll have to remove those walls and fake graves,” Quy said.

Dr faces 6 years in prison for breast lift death

A doctor who performed an illegal breast lift operation at a beauty salon in Hanoi, causing the death of a 39-year-old woman, faces up to six years in prison.

Dr. Pham Van Ai, director of Hanoi Beauty Salon in Hanoi’s Dong Da District, has pleaded guilty to accidentally causing a human death due to violating professional regulations, Dong Da police said yesterday.

He faces a prison sentence between one and six years. Ai has been released on bail, according to police.

On April 29, Bui Bich Loc arrived at the beauty salon at 257 Giai Phong Street in Dong Da District for a double eyelid and breast lift operation estimated at US$2,840.

Ai, another doctor and two nurses conducted the operation at about 1 p.m. and Loc was taken to the post-operation recovery room one hour later.

At 2 a.m. on April 30, Loc told Ai she was having trouble breathing and was nauseous. Ai called two other doctors to help him give emergency treatment to her, but she died one hour later.

The salon was only licensed to perform simple surgeries such as eyelid lifts. It did not have the proper license to perform more complicated procedures like breast lifts, said Nguyen Viet Cuong, chief inspector of the Hanoi Health Department.

Earlier this year, the salon was fined for providing unlicensed services, he said.

An investigator said Ai made a mistake during the breast lift surgery and the investigation agency is waiting for the autopsy results to make a full conclusion about the death.

Man found hanging at Can Tho University

A man, thought to be 20, was found dead, hanging with a rope around his neck, on Can Tho University’s campus in northern Vietnam early Wednesday morning.

The man was found in the School of Pharmacy’s faculty parking lot.

The university has yet to identify the body, VnExpress news website reported Nguyen Thanh Truong, the head of the Student Management Department, as saying.

An investigation is ongoing, he said.

President praises VN medical skills

President Nguyen Minh Triet visited the Vietnam-German Friendship Hospital in Hanoi on May 17, and praised the staff of professors, doctors and medical workers for their skills and attitude in caring for patients.

The hospital had successfully conducted several serious and complex organ transplant operations, highlighting the increasing skills of Vietnamese doctors as on par with medical professionals in the region and aiming to achieve world standard, the President said.

He urged the Health Ministry and relevant ministries and agencies to assist the hospital, in order to make it a modern medical centre, meeting the demand for health care and treatment of the people with appropriate service quality, costs and caring attitudes.

The hospital safely conducts between 130 and 150 major surgery operations relating to heart, nerves, stomach, brain, liver, kidney and bones each day, hospital Director, Dr Nguyen Tien Quyet, said.

In 2010 alone, with 1,600 professors, doctors, technicians, nurses and medical workers serving 970 patient beds, it successfully conducted surgery for 35,000 patients, shortening the treatment period by half compared with previous times, he said.

On this occasion, President Triet visited patients at the hospital.

Prominent among them was Vu Van Tien, 53, who was among four patients who had a successful operation to transplant liver from a brain-dead person on April 15. His health has now recovered. He thanked the hospital staff as well as the President for his interest.

Thieves stealing from whoremongers arrested

Ho Chi Minh City’s Binh Thanh District police yesterday arrested 7 members of a gang that stole money and valuables of playboys and are searching for the gang’s leaders.

At 22 p.m on May 13, after receiving leads from local residents, the police conducted a raid on the house at No. 94/9/5 on Road D3 in Ward 25 and caught the gang in the act of stealing VND15 million (US$740) and 4 mobile phones from two playboys.

The police arrested 7 members who later confessed that H. and M., a married couple, were their leaders.

Gang members said their job were to bring men who wanted to have sex with prostitutes to the house.

As the men had sex, the gang members would steal their valuables through a hole under the bed. The prostitutes then excused themselves, left the room and never returned.

Afterward, another gang member would act as “the owner of the hotel” and tell the guests to leave.

The arrested members told the police they had stolen from hundreds of men since they started last year.

They also said most of the victims were upset over their losses but didn’t report to the police because of shame.

Fisherman held after threatening to stab his mother

Nguyen Quang Lanh was arrested Sunday, eight hours after he went to his mother’s house and threatened to kill her.

After an eight-hour standoff, police in the southern province of Ba Ria-Vung Tau on Sunday rescued a woman whose son was threatening to stab her.

Nguyen Quang Lanh, 38, was arrested after the police used tear gas and stormed in his mother’s house at 9 a.m.

Earlier, at around 1 a.m., Nguyen Thi Kim Vang, 77, of Vung Tau City was sleeping in her house when her 38-year-old son Nguyen Quang Lanh knocked on the door. After he entered the room, Lanh chased his mother with a knife in his hand, threatening to stab her.

Vang managed to get into her bedroom and close the door, whereupon her son stabbed at it his knife, screaming for her to open the door.

After police of Ward 5 showed up following Vang’s phone call, Lanh held two knives in both his hands and threatened to kill himself if anyone entered the house.

The ward police called 113 emergency police to coordinate a rescue. When the police arrived at the house, Lanh asked them to buy him food and cigarettes, and call his wife, Vu Thi Hien, to the house.

He asked his wife to kneel down and pray with him by the window.

A church priest was sent to the house in an attempt to persuade the man to no avail. The police also climbed on the roof in an effort to enter the house.

The police later used a hammer to break the windows and spray tear gas inside the house. They wore masks and entered the house through the windows to arrest the man, eight hours after the incident.

Lanh, a fisherman, confessed to the police that he could not sleep and had bad dreams recently, but did not explain why he threatened his mother.

His wife said he was mostly a good-tempered man but had recently shown signs of mental instability.

“He once jumped into the sea while fishing but was fortunately saved by his friends on the boat,” Hien said.

She said Lanh had been fishing for 10 years and had just returned home on May 12 after a fishing trip.

The police said Lanh will be detained for further investigation.

Airline passenger found smuggling heroin

Customs officers at Ho Chi Minh City’s Tan Son Nhat Airport found a Vietnamese female passenger hid more than 300 grams of heroin under her clothes last Saturday.

The Jetstar Pacific BL790 flight bound for Hanoi was canceled after scanners found the heroin.

The police identified the woman as Diep Ngoc Tu from the central province of Phu Yen, but they did not reveal further details, saying they were investigating the case further.

Last January, officers at Hanoi’s Noi Bai International Airport arrested a Vietnamese female passenger with 4.3 kilograms of heroin hidden in her hand luggage on a flight bound for Singapore.

Under Vietnamese laws, possession, transport, or trade of more than 100 grams of heroin or cocaine can be punished with death.

Vietnamese lawyers study Canada’s experience

Canadian lawyers shared their experience in communications and financial management with Vietnamese colleagues at a seminar in Hanoi on May 18.

Organised by the Vietnam Bar Federation (VBF), the seminar saw two Canadian experts, Steve Bresolin and Steve Hanson, introduce communications activities of the Canadian Bar Association and steps to lay out communications and financial plans.

Participants worked in groups to discuss the VBF’s communications environment and factors that have affected its communication activities.

The valuable experience is expected to help the VBF fulfil its strategic target of improving self-management capacity in the financial sector, developing income and building capacity.

The seminar will also help improve administration capacity and increase sources of income for Vietnamese lawyers while contributing to promoting their role and image among the community, said VBF Chairperson Le Thuc Anh.

Vietnam earns World Silver Medallion 2010

Two 22-year-old students, Nguyen Sy Ha and Bui Cam Chi from HCM City’s Van Lang University have earned World Silver Medallion Award 2010 of the London Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI).

The event drew more than 250,000 competitors from 120 countries last year.

The award is presented to contestants gaining the highest score in the LCCI test, which includes 10 questions focusing on practical contingencies in a trade environment.

The award presentation ceremony is scheduled to take place at Van Lang University on May 22.

The LCCI certificate is used as a worldwide standard for companies to recruit personnel and the LCCI programme has been implemented in the Vietnamese universities of Van Lang, Huflit and Industry and Culture.


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