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China's Sichuan province was devastated by a magnitude 8 earthquake in 2008. Three years on, authorities are calling the rebuilding efforts a "victory". But some victims say they are still struggling to recover, because they can't access aid money to carry on their construction efforts.
It's been more than 3 years since a magnitude 8 earthquake devastated China's Sichuan province. So far, the Chinese regime says it has spent $123-billion on rebuilding efforts, and that 95% of planned construction projects have been finished. But for victims of the quake, the recovery efforts are far from over. Some complained to us that the situation on the ground is not like what local state-media has reported.
[Mr. Wu, Sichuan earthquake victim]:
"The local Party Secretary holds on to all sorts of project funding, making it extremely hard for us to build our home. The construction drags on day after day, and they don't offer us any cash aid. So building our home is constantly starting and stopping."
One victim says they were meant to receive about $6,000 in funding to rebuild their damaged home, but they've only received one tenth of that.
[Sichuan earthquake victim]:
"Whenever we talk about the government here, everyone is cursing. If the people go to Beijing to appeal, the local government will send people to intercept us. After we're brought back here, we'd be tortured."
The May 12th earthquake in 2008 left more than 86,000 people dead or missing. Many of the victims were students who died after their poorly constructed schools collapsed. Community efforts to investigate have been thwarted by authorities, and investigators like Tan Zhouren and Huang Qi have been imprisoned on vague subversion and state-secret charges.