Authorities at Industry and Commerce Department in Bokeo province donated 40 kg of illegally imported fresh pork to Bokeo Ethnic Group Boarding School in Oudom village, Houayxay district, on Wednesday, garnering praise from social media users.
Mrs. Phuongphan Phoumsavanh, the head of the Department of Industry and Commerce in Bokeo Province, and other officials donated 40 kg of pork, worth LAK 3.2 million, which was seized from illegal importers who had not paid the relevant taxes.
Bokeo Ethnic Group Boarding School is a government secondary school that serves many ethnic group students from across the province. Hence, such a considerable donation would be beneficial to both students and teachers.
Numerous netizens praised this effort and asked officials in other provinces to donate illegally imported food items that are of good quality, instead of destroying and wasting them.
“This is a much better use of confiscated items than burying or burning them,” commented one Facebook user. “This is a good start,” commented another. “The authorities should change their approach and put confiscated items to better use, by donating them to people in need,” added another person.
Many residents were also surprised by the donation, as Lao authorities in many provinces have destroyed a variety of illegally imported and confiscated goods in recent months.
In early September, Vientiane officials destroyed 4,405 kg of illegally imported buffalo skin and pork products worth nearly LAK 76 million, citing a lack of necessary paperwork, such as tax declarations and animal health certificates from the agricultural sector.
Similarly, in July, authorities in Attapeu province also buried 207 kilograms of fish that were confiscated from local fishermen during a ban on fishing during the spawning season.
Additionally, in June, local authorities in Bolikhamxay province destroyed 4,000 kg of illegally imported fresh chilies at the Nam Phao Border checkpoint.