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Public pool project owes workers pay for 10 years

By Du Liya (Global Times)

08:11, August 01, 2012

A public sports and recreation venue affiliated with the local sports bureau in Zhanjiang, South China's Guangdong Province has been accused of failing to pay a project contractor, which has owed 300 migrant workers their wages for the past 10 years.

The project, which was started in 1999, involved laying a pipeline that feeds seawater to a seaside swimming pool.

Liu Jianrong, the project manager, told the Global Times on Tuesday that the pool, which is administered by the Zhanjiang Sports Bureau, still hasn't paid the contractor in full.

According to the city's audit office for construction projects, the project's construction cost was more than 7.4 million yuan ($1.2 million), almost six times its original budget.

Liu said the bureau only paid 20 percent of the contractor's costs, leaving it owing 300 migrant workers more than 3 million yuan.

The Zhanjiang Intermediate People's Court ruled in 2009 that the remaining amount owed should be paid by the pool, which has said it has no ability to pay.

The city government had agreed to use welfare funds from the sale of its sports lottery to make payments on the amount owed from 2011 to 2013, a local newspaper, the Southern Village, reported.

"I was unable to pay the salary of the migrant workers as a result of the default," Liu said.

"I have tried many ways and even met with government officials in a public appeal for help last November, but I have not received further results," Liu told the Global Times.

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