District 1 gets tough on illegal sidewalk use
HCMC - The authority of District 1 in HCMC has proposed issuing specific regulations revoking the business registration certificates of firms which illegally occupy sidewalks in a bold move to return sidewalks to pedestrians.
Speaking at a meeting in HCMC on February 27, a representative of District 1 called for the city’s leaders to consider submitting a proposal to the Government as there have not been such regulations in place.
HCMC chairman Nguyen Thanh Phong, speaking at the meeting, hailed the effort of District 1 to crack down on the illegal encroachment on sidewalks over the past few days. He said the city’s leaders planned to meet and tell districts to strictly deal with this issue.
“The other districts will be tasked with restoring order for the sidewalk,” Phong said.
In recent days, the urban management authorities of District 1 led by district vice chairman Doan Ngoc Hai have taken tough sanctions against the illegal occupancy of sidewalks, and the illegal parking of State-owned cars on sidewalks and roadsides.
Vo Van Hoan, office manager of the HCMC People’s Committee, told a press conference on February 27 that regulations on sidewalk management have come into force but have not been strictly enforced or even ignored in certain areas.
Hoan pointed out the lax management of sidewalks in the outlying districts, and that local citizens have taken advantage of this to encroach. The city has stepped up sidewalk management but to no avail due partly to the lack of responsibility of agencies.
“Fines imposed over the past time are not heavy enough to stop such encroachment,” Hoan said.
The Government’s Decree 155/ND-CP specifies relevant regulations but how to effectively enforce the regulations is a major issue. Hoan said HCMC has sought the Government’s nod to slap higher-than-permitted fines on violators who are caught on camera.
Hoan noted District 1 is the city’s central business district and its economy grows based on restaurants, hotels and other services so security, social order and environmental hygiene must be strictly managed and strengthened to create a good reputation for the district. Cracking down on pavement encroachment shows the determination of the district rather than a strong will of District 1’s vice chairman Doan Ngoc Hai or any other individual.
“We throw our weight behind District 1 and the office of the HCMC People’s Committee must abide by relevant regulations,” Hoan said. “Priority cars will not be allowed to park in front of the City Hall from March 1.”