Vice President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee Nguyen Huu Dung presents a gift to Most Venerable Duong Nhon. (Source: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – Vice President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front (VFF) Central Committee Nguyen Huu Dung on April 11 visited the Patriotic United Buddhist Association in the Mekong Delta province of Soc Trang on the occasion of Khmer people’s traditional New Year festival, Chol Chnam Thmay - which falls on April 14-16.

The official stressed the important role played by Khmer people, who make up more than 30 percent of Soc Trang’s population, in previous wars and the current development. 

Khmer people have significantly contributed to socio-economic development, security, stability and cultural conservation in the locality, Dung said. 

He urged the association and Khmer Buddhist dignitaries, monks and nuns to set good examples in building national unity, contributing to the development of Soc Trang and the country. 

On the occasion, the VFF Central Committee presented gifts to the association and outstanding monks and nuns in the province. 

The same day, a delegation of the VFF’s branch in Ho Chi Minh City also granted gifts to Khmer people in difficult circumstances in District 3 and Tan Binh district. 

Additionally, the Mekong Delta province of Vinh Long held a meeting with representatives of Khmer people who number 24,000 in the locality. 

Truong Van Sau, Deputy Secretary of the provincial Party Committee, stressed that Vinh Long has always paid attention to training Khmer officials and preserving Khmer culture and education in Khmer communities. 

He called on Khmer officials, soldiers and people to play a more active role in production and the building of new-style rural and urban areas. 

A similar event was held in the Mekong Delta province of Hau Giang, which is home to more than 24,500 Khmer people, on April 11. 

At the meeting, 220 gifts were given to Khmer Buddhist monks, nuns, retirees, social policy beneficiaries and prestigous people in the locality. 

In 2017, Hau Giang invested more than 16 billion VND (704,000 USD) in infrastructure, production, housing and job generation for Khmer people. 

Chol Chnam Thmay is one of the most important festivals of Khmer people. It usually lasts three days and is celebrated mostly in pagodas. The festival is a demonstration of Khmer people’s aspirations to move on from the previous year and look forward to a promising new year.-VNA