Congressman forced to apologise for blog polemic

VietNamNet Bridge – Hoang Huu Phuoc, a National Assembly Deputy from HCM City, has had to apologise for using offensive language in criticising fellow deputy Duong Trung Quoc in a recent blog entry.


Deputy Phuoc has attracted widespread criticism after he posted an entry entitled “Duong Trung Quoc and Four Huge Idiocies” on February 9.

Deputy Hoang Huu Phuoc (left) and Deputy Duong Trung Quoc (right).

Deputy Hoang Huu Phuoc (left) and Deputy Duong Trung Quoc (right).

The “idiocies,” according to Phuoc’s entry, were Quoc’s reasons for supporting for a bill on demonstrations and the legalisation of prostitution in recent National Assembly sessions.

Phuoc said Quoc showed his lack of knowledge in different fields, including history despite being a historian, as well as his “aggressiveness” and “hastiness” in voicing his opinions in meetings. He also called his counterpart “arrogant” and “illogical” in suggesting that Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung should stop apologising and initiate a “culture of resignation” instead.

According to Le Nhu Tien, Vice Chairman of the National Assembly Committee for Culture, Education, Youth and Children, it was the first time ever in Vietnam that a national lawmaker openly offended another.

On February 18, the delegation of HCM City NA deputies had a meeting with Mr. Phuoc on the issue. Through mass media, he sent his apology to Deputy Duong Trung Quoc. Deputy Phuoc admitted the unsuitable argumentative style in his writing. He said he removed the article from his blog.

“I want to apologise Deputy Duong Truong Quoc for using a wrong method to express personal ideas through blog. I should have sent a letter to him,” Deputy Phuoc said.

He, however, said that he still had differences with Mr. Quoc on the issues related to the bill on demonstrations and some policies discussed at previous National Assembly meetings.

Speaking with reporters, Deputy Duong Trung Quoc said he accepted Mr. Phuoc’s apology. He said he still respected Mr. Phuoc as representing HCM City’s voters.

A serious problem of behaviour culture

“It is normal to see different viewpoints between National Assembly deputies, but the use of offensive words like this case is unprecedented. I think that it is a serious problem. I hoped that an impostor wrote the article, but when Deputy Phuoc confirmed he had done, I felt really shocked,” said the Vice Chairman of the National Assembly Committee for Culture, Education, Youth and Children.

He added that deputies had different ways to discuss issues they cared about.

They could directly discuss with each other at NA meetings, or send emails, make phone calls, and should not use such offensive words. Regulations of NA sessions stipulate that deputies were not allowed to insult each other and other people.

Source: DTriNews