VietNamNet Bridge – Three months after Vedan, the Taiwanese seasoning powder producer, transferred 50 percent of compensation package to the Farmers’ Associations of the three southern provinces of Dong Nai, Ba Ria-Vung Tau and HCM City, farmers have not received the money.
In September 2008, Vedan was caught to discharginged waste water to the Thi Vai River, which it had been doing for 14 years. The polluter tried to delay paying compensation to farmers who live along the river until farmers lodged their petitions against it into the court in early 2010.
In late August and early September 2010, Vedan transferred 50 percent of compensation to the three above provinces, including VND120 billion ($6 million) to Dong Nai province, nearly VND23 billion ($1.5 million) to HCM City and VND26.8 billion ($1.4 million) to Ba Ria Vung Tau.
However, farmers have not received the money until now because the three provinces are seeking an appropriate payment mode.
Dong Nai’s Vice Chair Ao Van Thinh said that the province will pay compensation to farmers based on their aquaculture areas and the numbers of years affected by Vedan’s waste water. Around 5000 families in Dong Nai suffered losses caused by Vedan’s polluting act.
According to Thinh, Dong Nai may pay the compensation to farmers in mid-December.
In HCM City, the lateness in paying compensation is because many more people who live outside the area affected by Vedan’s waste water also claimed rights for compensation.
According to HCM City’s Can Gio District Farmers’ Association, a total of 839 families will receive the money. Lawyer Nguyen Van Hau, victims’ legal representative, said the money will be paid to farmers before the lunar New Year (February 2011).
In Ba Ria Vung Tau, a meeting will be held on December 8 to discuss the plan of paying compensation to 1255 farmers that were affected.