Luu Binh Nhuong, a National Assembly deputy, talks to Tiền Phong (Vanguard) newspaper on some of the serious problems in land planning in Vietnamese cities.
|National Assembly deputy Luu Binh Nhuong. — Photo tienphong.vn|
How do you respond to a report on rampant violations of the Law on Land Planning in many cities, such as the recent charges against the leader of the Muong Thanh property development group over the construction of a building without permits?
I and other lawmakers have raised the issue during National Assembly meetings many times. Even Nguyen Duc Chung, Chairman of the Ha Noi People’s Committee, has stated at a full house meeting that Hanoi’s land master planning has been seriously violated. Even me, during quite a few Q&A sessions of the National Assembly, I questioned the Prime Minister and the Minister of Construction on the issue of serious encroachment of land planning in Hanoi.
In reality, we have spent billions of Vietnamese dong on the development of Hanoi’s land planning. Yet, such land planning has not been up to our expectations and it has even been subjected to change several times at the will of certain people.
What has driven changes in Hanoi’s land planning?
Many people have stated clearly that such changes in land planning are in the interests of a certain group of people. But until now things remain hanging in the balance.
The other reason I should mention is poor land planning knowledge of a certain group of people who have been assigned to the job. However, many people have openly stated “they have abused their power for their own benefits”.
What are the responsibilities of local authorities and local construction inspectors?
Professor Dang Hung Vo once said concerned Government agencies should probe these issues and then give the answers to the people. In my opinion without support from a certain group of people in power, no such things would have happened.
It is also reported that in 2016, State inspectors released a report on the final conclusion of their inspection mission. Yet, until now the report has not yet been made public and it has caused anxiety among many people and even Government officials. We live in a society ruled by law, so no one should live above the law.
How do you respond to complaints on the lack of transparency in land planning?
The lack of transparency in land planning has been reported in many localities nationwide. In my opinion, to achieve the final goal of transparency in land planning, local governments should invite the people to participate in the land planning process in accordance with the motto in Vietnam that “the public should be informed, involved in discussion and in the course of implementation and inspection”.
What should we do to make sure urban land planning is performed legally?
We live in a society ruled by law. By now, our Vietnamese legal system has almost been completed.
Regarding land planning, concerned authorities should discuss with the people and listen to their comments/suggestions before making their final decision.
More importantly, land planning must be transparent and accountable for all Vietnamese citizens to monitor and ensure laws are strictly implemented.