The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

By Vo Thanh, Nguyen Hai   October 5, 2021 | 06:30 pm GMT+7
Despite the pouring rain, thousands of people from HCMC and nearby localities soldiered on toward their hometowns in northern and central Vietnam, some over 2,000 km away.
The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

From Monday to Tuesday morning, thousands took to their motorbikes to carry goods and family through Hai Van Pass in Thua Thien-Hue Province in central Vietnam. The heavy rains forced many to traverse slippery roads with limited vision.

Most of them hail from northern and central Vietnamese provinces. On their journey back home, they've covered around 1,000 kilometers from HCMC and other southern Vietnam localities, before reaching Thua Thien-Hue. They would still need to travel hundreds of kilometers more to reach their destinations.

The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

A checkpoint at the foot of Hai Van Pass in Lang Co Town, Phu Loc District, Thua Thien-Hue, sees hundreds arriving for medical declaration at around 5 p.m. on Monday. They had to wait in the rain for police to guide them home.

The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

Tran Anh Dung, 36, has traveled over 1,000 kilometers to carry his wife and children from Dong Nai back to their hometown in Quang Binh.

"I came to Dong Nai to work as a driver for Grab. We've been unemployed for over four months, and the support money isn't enough to sustain ourselves, so we decided to return home," Dung said.

The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

Over 1,000 people and their motorbikes follow police officers to go home at around 5:20 p.m. Monday.

Thua Thien-Hue authorities guide the group from the Hai Van Pass to Quang Tri's Hai Lang District, spanning over 150 km.

The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

A police officer from Thua Thien-Hue watches over a group fixing their motorbikes by a National Highway 1A section in Huong Thuy Town.

A man in the 10-person group said they began their journey on Oct. 2 from Binh Duong to return to their hometown in Ha Giang. They alternately took to steering and rested by the road when needed.

The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

People continue their journey in the night. From Thua Thien-Hue, those with hometowns in Ha Giang or Lao Cai would need to travel another thousand kilometers.

The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

A group of motorbikers pass through Nghe An's Vinh Town in north central Vietnam.

The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

People rest near Ben Thuy Bridge in Vinh. They were given food and water by authorities.

The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

Phang A Phu, 24, lets his nine-month-old daughter drink water from a bottle. The family from Son La has traveled thousands of kilometers already.

"The way back home is still so long. I just hope we are healthy enough to go all the way, because we have no other choice," Phu said.

The elements couldn't stop migrants on journey home

Authorities help transport broken down vehicles to repair shops.

Over the past few days, thousands of workers in HCMC, Binh Duong, Dong Nai and Long An have been pouring back to the Mekong Delta as localities began to relax coronavirus restrictions starting October.

Out of around 3.5 million migrant workers in the aforementioned localities, 2.1 million wish to return to their hometowns, according to the Ministry of Public Security. Local authorities are worried the sheer number of returnees would overwhelm their quarantine capacities and risk more infections.

 
 
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