Natural reef ‘completely destroyed’ by tourism project

By Viet Quoc   January 3, 2021 | 10:20 pm PT
Natural reef ‘completely destroyed’ by tourism project
Part of the Da Nhay, a natural reef along the beach of Ke Ga in Vietnam's south central province of Binh Thuan, has been destroyed, January 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Viet Quoc.
A popular reef along the Ke Ga Beach in the south central province of Binh Thuan has been destroyed by a private tourism project.

The natural reef, called Da Nhay (jumping rock), stretches more than 200 meters in Ham Thuan Nam District, with rocks of many different sizes and shapes lying adjacent to each other.

Its unique appearance and structure and location by the beach has been a tourist attraction for years.

However, residents of Tan Thanh Commune have reported parts of the reef being damaged, with blocks of natural rocks smashed and leveled on a section of around 30 meters.

The reef now looks no different than a heap of debris at some construction site, they’ve said.

Le Van Hung, 32, who fishes in the area, said such huge damage to the reef cannot be fixed.

"It is such a pity that the magnificent reef has been completely destroyed," he said.

Hong Thanh Huyen, chairman of Tan Thanh Commune, said the area where the part of the reef has been vandalized lies in front of a tourism project.

Around a year ago, the investor has started pumping sand all over to lift the foundation for the project and create a path all the way from their project to the reef.

Then they arbitrarily smashed the reef with the intention of creating a way to the sea.

For now, what can be seen at the scene is a huge amount of white sand that stretches from the project to the area near the beach, and blocks of concrete placed in between the natural rocks that have been smashed. It is assumed that those blocks will be used to build an embankment.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources of Ham Thuan Nam District has asked the investor to put the project on hold pending more inspections.

"It is now confirmed that the investor has been building the project illegally," Huyen said, without explaining why the work of destroying the natural reef has been carried out under the nose of the authorities for a year.

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