Ho Chi Minh City to cancel New Year’s Eve fireworks show

Following a recent directive from the Secretariat of the Communist Party of Vietnam, Ho Chi Minh City is expected to remove its planned firework show from the list of festive activities on the coming New Year’s Eve.

A recent directive by the Secretariat aims to prevent wastefulness and support the poor by requesting localities across Vietnam refrain from holding pyrotechnic shows during the New Year (January 1) and Tet, or Lunar New Year (January 28) holidays.

Local authorities were also asked to focus on improving living conditions for those less fortunate living in border areas and on islands, as well as assist flood victims in central provinces and those affected by environmental pollution.

During an interview with Tuoi Tre (Youth) newspaper on Thursday, vice-chairwoman of the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Nguyen Thi Thu stated that the city’s fireworks display is typically funded by the private sector, not the local budget, though “the southern city will follow the directive of the Secretariat, specifically during the New Year’s Eve.”

Many people will be upset at the disappearance of the city’s traditional holiday celebration, Thu continued, adding that it has also become local tourist attraction.

A local official hands out supplies to flood victims in the south-central province of Quang Ngai. Photo: Tuoi Tre

Despite the cancelation, other festive activities are still expected to be organized on the Nguyen Hue Walking Street and at the Municipal Theater, according to the vice-chairwoman.

Leaders of the city have also requested that artistic performances be held at 10 locations across the metropolis.

Citizens throughout the country have voiced their support for the plan, stating that the money, whether from the private sector or local coffers, should still be used to support the poor.

The casualties and damage caused by flooding in the central region is a cause worth serious support during the New Year holiday, said Quang Phu, a citizen in Tan Binh District.

Leaders in Can Tho, a major city in the Mekong Delta, also confirmed that there will be no pyrotechnic show in the metropolis during the upcoming holidays.

Authorities in the central city of Da Nang, however, are still considering a fireworks celebration on January 1, 2017 to honor the 20th anniversary of the city being named one of Vietnam’s five municipalities, though only private sector money would be used for the show.