Culture of resignation and apology to the people

In our country’s history, Uncle Ho once apologized to the people. That was when the Party made mistakes in the land reforms in the years 195419551956. At that time, the Party made mistakes. Stereotyping China’s land reform model does not take into account the objective conditions in Vietnam: the people and bourgeois landowners followed the revolution in large numbers. Furthermore, the land situation in our country after the August Revolution and during The years of resistance against the French were not harsh.


According to documents of the General Statistics Office printed in the book “Thirty years of the Democratic Republic of Vietnam” by Truth Publishing House in Hanoi in 1978, the land situation of Vietnamese farmers during the land reform period is as follows: farmers use 717% of land, only 18% of landlords’ land, including many resistance landlords, patriotic landlords.


Thus, farmers are not too short of land, leading to land reform. But at that time, due to “communist childishness” as Lenin once criticized the Russian communists, our Party, with its fiery spirit of attacking the revolution, wronged many people.

The expanded 10th Central Conference of the Party in September 1956 severely reviewed the mistakes in land reform. Uncle Ho, on behalf of the Party, also publicly apologized to the people. That is a very valuable culture for the leader of a leading Party.

This time, the PMU18 case is not about the wrongful doing of many innocent people, but the wrongful doing of many innocent money by corrupt officials. ODA currency borrowed from foreign countries at low interest rates or if lucky enough to receive non-refundable aid is essentially the people’s currency.

The government has been lax in management, and has also been actively stealing, causing the loss of many millions of dollars in ODA money. The responsibility of the Ministry of Transport is clear. But the Government is the person with the highest responsibility before the National Assembly, the Party, and the people, so we cannot help but courageously accept responsibility. We cannot just deal with our subordinates while the Government has the courage to sit back and watch and even criticize those who have done wrong as if they were outsiders.


In all democratic countries in the world, when a negative incident occurs, the person directly responsible is punished. Or if it’s light, then apologize to the people. If it’s serious, then voluntarily resign. If the incident is serious and involves the responsibility of the entire Government, the Prime Minister will personally apologize to the people. If it is serious  then the entire Government will resign. Compensation for damages and administrative or criminal proceedings due to violations is another matter.

In Japan recently, the Japanese Minister of Agriculture publicly apologized to the people because he imported beef from the US without close inspection. For companies and large business groups, when there are consumer complaints or accidents, the leadership of the company or agency publicly apologizes to the people.

On Japanese television, from time to time, we see a scene of a certain leadership bowing down in front of the television camera. image to apologize to the people. That is a very civilized culture of behavior among leaders in Japan.


In our country, we recently saw Minister of Agriculture Le Huy Ngo courageously resign because he accepted responsibility for the La Thi Kim Oanh case. And with the PMU18 case, Minister of Transport Dao Dinh Binh also resigned, which domestic public opinion considered more of an act of “running away from the village”. But publicly apologizing to the people is still very rare in our country.


The Ministry of Health has many scandals in management, but we have not seen any leader of the Ministry of Health apologize to the people. The Ministry of Education and Training also has many scandals in management, but no one has yet apologized to the people. The appointment of officials had many shortcomings, but the leaders of the Central Organizing Committee did not see an apology to the people. The “prison food” and “car robbery” cases have occurred on many roads in the country and we have not seen any local leaders or police leaders publicly apologize to the people.

Van Thanh underground tunnel case, Nam Cam case, Dung Quat slow construction case, Da Lat police beating people without cause, investigation case Tons of restaurant staff in Hoa Binh, many wrongful death lawsuits, “leaving suitcases of money at the airport” and drinking with Dung Hue at the Melia hotel… and no leader stood up to apologize to the people.


The leader’s culture of apologizing to the people In our country it is still very low. There are few people who have the courage to learn from Uncle Ho’s example of apologizing to the people of the land reform mistakes. If this time the Prime Minister (new or current) personally apologizes publicly to the people about the PMU18 incident, it will be a beautiful cultural feature of the leader.

Minh Tuan
(From Tokyo)