Vietnamese public opinion is strongly speaking out to prevent what they believe is an army major trying to bend the truth about a traffic accident directly related to him more than a month ago in which a female high school student was killed.
According to VOA’s research, the accident occurred on the morning of June 28 in Phan Rang-Thap Cham city, Ninh Thuan province, when 18-year-old female student Ho Hoang Anh was riding a motorbike from her home to a school and was hit by a car. Army Major Hoang Van Minh’s 7 seats hit the girl from behind near the right-hand side of the road.
A video recording of the incident, reposted by many Vietnamese newspapers and social media users, shows Hoang Anh being thrown about 4 meters forward, hitting a lamp post, and lying motionless in the scene. She died while being taken to the hospital.
The recorded images also show that a man believed to be Mr. Minh got out of the car while still talking on his mobile phone, he observed the victim but did not appear to actively give first aid. Netizens rated it as “having an insensitive, unacceptable attitude.”
A woman coming out of the car, believed to be Mr. Minh’s wife, seems to have made more of an effort to save the girl.
Two weeks after the accident, there were early indications that there was an attempt to disguise the truth about the accident when Phan Rang-Thap Cham city police informed Hoang Anh’s family that her blood sample has an alcohol content of 0.79 mg/100 ml of blood.
In addition, according to VOA’s research, a Facebook account named Minh Hang believed to belong to the wife of Major Minh, who caused the accident, posted a post blaming the accident on the school girl. This article makes arguments including that Hoang Anh rides a motorbike too fast, her motorbike tires are too old with no grip, a poor quality helmet, and has a high alcohol content in her blood.
Her biological father, Mr. Ho Hoang Hung, told local media that he was “frustrated” about the collection of Hoang Anh’s blood samples without the witness of his family and representatives of other authorities.
Mr. Hung has also filed a complaint with Ninh Thuan province police, Phan Rang-Thap Cham police chief, and other provincial leaders to complain about what he alleges is a record of the accident that killed his girl was falsified, Vietnamese newspapers reported.
This controversial incident attracted public attention and led to much public criticism on social media for army major Hoang Van Minh, police officer Phan Rang-Thap Cham, and the Ninh Thuan Provincial Hospital, which gives the results of alcohol concentration, as observed by VOA.
Many people use social networks, including influential names with hundreds of thousands of followers such as businesswoman Le Hoai Anh, freelance journalist Do Cao Cuong, social critic Hoang Dung, writer Nguyen Dinh Bon, etc. said that there were signs that the authorities covered each other, and slandered female student Hoang Anh.
Based on the published video, famous Facebookers and people knowledgeable in the law determined that Hoang Anh was in the right lane, while Major Minh of the Vietnam Air Force-Air Force had changed direction without observing and no lights on, and possibly even talking on the phone while driving.
Public opinion on social networks condemns that the attempt to blame Hoang Anh, especially the result of alcohol concentration, is inhumane and unethical. They demanded the authorities re-investigate, clarify who is really responsible for the accident, prosecute and strictly handle it. Posts by famous Facebookers about the incident attracted thousands of supportive comments and went viral through the “share” function.
VOA tried many times to contact Major Hoang Van Minh and Hang, his wife, to find out their views, but they did not respond.
After the press published the complaint about the killed school student, and after many days of public pressure, on August 1, more than a month since the accident, the chairman of the People’s Committee of Ninh Thuan province assigned the provincial police to investigate and verify the results of Hoang Anh’s alcohol content, and at the same time to settle Mr. Hung’s complaint about falsifying the accident record.
Also on August 1, Ninh Thuan police announced to the domestic press that Hoang Anh’s alcohol test result with an index of 0.79 mg/100 ml of blood was a “normal” level- “No sign of drinking.” Lao Dong newspaper wrote that the information released by the leader of the Traffic Police Department under the Ninh Thuan provincial police has quelled the views that female student Hoang Anh used alcohol before being killed.
VOA observed that public opinion on social networks recorded the moves of provincial leaders and Ninh Thuan provincial police, but they still advised each other to continue to closely monitor and speak out frankly about shady things for justice of female student Hoang Anh, and more deeply so that everyone’s children do not fall into the same situation in the future.