VietNamNet Bridge – After receiving money from Sonadezi, which was compensation
for the damages caused by its discharged waste water, the local people in Ba
Cheo canal area have begun re-organizing their lives from scratch.
Most of the local people in the area have confirmed that they received money in
compensation from Sonadezi Long Thanh on pre-Tet days. The sum of money they
received from Sonadezi was modest, nearly VND12 billion.
Farming fish and poultry again to earn living
Tang Van Mien, a farmer in Tam An commune, said that he has received VND80
million in compensation from Sonadezi, but the modest sum of money does not make
him happy, because he needs much more than that to revive his fish ponds and
gardens which were damaged by the waste water from the company.
Mien was seen repairing the dykes of his ponds on a day, two weeks after he
received the compensation. The farmer said he has eight shrimp and fish ponds,
two fields and one garden, totaling 3,000 square meters in total.
“The damages are terrible. We have been sitting idle over the last several
years. VND80 million is just 50 percent of the money I need to resume my
production,” he said.
Tran Van Em, the owner of a 6-member family in hamlet 2, was seen chopping down
the dead trees in his garden. Em said his orchard, comprising of 100 rambuttan,
mango trees was dead because of the waste water from Sonadezi.
“I have decided to chop down all the dead trees and start from the very
beginning,” Em said.
Ho Thi Ba, who was tending 50 ducks on Ba Cheo canal, which has got cleaner and
greener, complained that her hundreds of ducks have died because of the dirty
Nguyen Van Tinh received VND1.2 billion in compensation, complained that his
whole-life fortune has completely lost due to the waste water, and he does not
know how much money and how much time he would need to found the fields,
orchards and aquatic ponds.
The nightmare is over
The Ba Cheo canal links with the Dong Nai River which runs across the Tam An
commune, creating a fertile land area. The bountiful crops in the fertile land
brought the lives of comfort to local residents.
However, since the day Sonadezi began setting up its factory in the area,
dividing the canal into two parts, the happy life of local people has ended.
An old man in Tam An commune said that the dirty untreated waste water from
Sonadezi had been discharged to the Ba Cheo canal for the last many years until
the day the discharging was caught red handed by the police.
“The trees then got withered because of the poisonous water, ducks and aquatic
creatures died. It was so terrible,” said Phung Thi Din, an old woman in Tam An
“At that time, we could not do anything to fix the problem, and we did not know
to whom we should complain to stop the problem,” Din said.
It took Ba Cheo canal area residents more than one year to sue Sonadezi and
claim for damages. “We wish that the nightmare is over, and such a thing will
not come again,” said Le Van Mai, Deputy Chair of the Farmers’ Association,
while recalling the terrible days.
The Ba Cheo canal now looks cleaner. A monitoring station is being built. This
is a station of the network of monitoring stations installed by the Dong Nai
provincial authorities, which would allow monitoring the quality of the waste
water in the “hot spots”.