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Monday, May 17, 2021

36 face charges for involvement in expressway’s deterioration

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HCMC – Investigators at the Ministry of Public Security have proposed the Supreme People’s Procuracy indict 36 people for their alleged involvement in the deterioration of the newly built Danang-Quang Ngai Expressway.

They were all accused of violating regulations on construction, causing serious consequences, the local media reported.

The investigative police agency has completed an investigation into violations at the Vietnam Expressway Corporation (VEC), the management board of the Danang-Quang Ngai Expressway project and the relevant agencies.

Of the accused, 35 people are Vietnamese, including former VEC deputy general directors Nguyen Manh Hung and Le Quang Hao, and Hoang Viet Hung, former director of the project’s management board. The 32 others are employees and technicians of the project’s management board.

In addition, a Japanese person, Takao Inami, chief consultant and head of an office for consulting of the project and supervision of its execution, was proposed to be indicted.

According to the results of the investigation, the Danang-Quang Ngai Expressway project, whose investor is VEC, has a total length of nearly 140 kilometers. In the first phase, a 65-kilometer section from Danang City to Tam Ky City of Quang Nam Province was developed. The remaining 74-kilometer section was built in the second phase.

The project, which required more than VND34.5 trillion in investment, is a national key project. Work on the project started in 2013. The first section was put into service in 2017, while the second section was opened to traffic the following year.

However, just weeks later, many sections were riddled with potholes, sparking public concern, so the Investigative Police Agency launched an investigation.

During the execution of the project, the investor, contractors, consultants and other relevant agencies failed to comply with the regulations on construction, according to investigators.

They also failed to meet the technical standards and design requirements, resulting in the severe deterioration of the road.

On the 65-kilometer section in the first phase, there are up to 380 potholes and cracks, or six potholes and cracks on average per kilometer of the expressway.

Besides proposing the indictment against the 36 people, the Investigative Police Agency has transferred documents on two packages to the Criminal Investigation Office of the Ministry of National Defense for further investigation.

Mai Tuan Anh, general director of VEC between 2011 and 2017 and chairman of the board of VEC in 2017-2020, has also been found irresponsible while performing his duties, affecting the project’s quality.

The Investigative Police Agency will address the violations of Anh and some other foreigners in the second phase of the investigation later.

Violations in the second phase of the project have also been separated for handling at a later stage.

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