Hundreds of households in central Phu Yen Province's Ea-Lam Commune, mostly E-de ethnic people, have gone without clean water despite the construction of a water supply system several years ago.
HA NOI —
The system was built in 1999 and completed in 2005. After being repaired several times and upgraded at a cost of more than VND5 billion (US$245,000), it failed to keep up a supply clean water to about 1,500 people.
Many households in Bung B Village complained that the water was pumped into their house only once every three days, and that it was not clean enough.
They said they still had to use water from local wells or springs for their daily life.
Recent tests by Phu Yen Province People's Committee showed that the provincial Centre for Rural Water Supply and Environmental Sanitation, as the project investor, failed to follow proper technical requirements during the building and operating processes.
For example, the centre operated the pumping system 12 hours per day instead of 15 and 20 hours as intended. And the water supply capacity was designed to provide 60 litres per head per day instead of 100 litres as required.
Besides, the centre installed more 1,000 metres of pipelines without re-examining the whole system and repairing the downgraded parts as requested.
The provincial Department of Agriculture and Rural Development's deputy director Le Chi Trong said although the system installed pipelines to 438 among 527 households, the water was not clean enough to cook or drink.
Worse, several households in Bung B Village and about 40 others in Bai Village didn't have water for their daily use, he said.
To deal with the problem, the provincial department has required the centre to hire consultancy units to calculate and inspect the water supply system - and to replace and upgrade run down pipelines before the end of 2012.
The centre would have to cover all the costs.
It has also been ordered to work with the People's Committees of Song Hinh District and Ea-Lam Commune to complete the installation of water gauges and other equipment to help ensure constant supplies. — VNS