BEIRUT — The Beirut and Mount Lebanon Water Establishment issued a statement Saturday announcing that to fully repair the damage that has interrupted Beirut’s water supply would take “around two weeks,” the state-run National News Agency reported.
Here’s what we know:
• The water establishment issued a statement updating residents after “a technical error” in a pipe supplying Beirut interrupted water supply “in the middle of the past week,” claiming that the “main error has been rectified but that it had caused further leakage elsewhere in the network.” The establishment announced it would need “around two weeks” to completely repair the network by “replacing large parts of it.”
• The water establishment said it “will not wait” and will be “able to deliver water to the main tank in Burj Abi Haidar, and thus gradually restore distribution to the areas of Hadath, al-Musaytbeh, Zuqaq al-Blat, Hamra, Ain al-Mreisseh, Bachoura, Basta.”
• The issue has severely affected the residents of Beirut. Grace, a Hamra resident, has been forced to buy water. She says that so far she’s had to pay 1.7 million lira for 1000 liters from a private supplier. “They know there’s a shortage, so they upped the prices,” she told L’Orient Today. “We used to pay LL250,000” for 1000 liters.
• Earlier today, video emerged of Beirut’s opposition MPs Waddah Sadek and Ibrahim Mneimneh arguing with caretaker Energy Minister Walid Fayyad over the delays in the repair of a key pipe in Beirut’s water network infrastructure, which hasn’t worked for the past two weeks.
• Sadek, Mneimneh and Melhem Khalaf posted a video from the site of the broken pipe, saying “the only pipe that gives water and no maintenance has been undertaken on it in twelve years. Today they found out water can be supplied from Achrafieh … We’ve been here for five hours, the [energy] minister came for half an hour. The general director of the [water] establishment didn’t come. Neither did any emergency teams … This six-meter pipe represents the reality of state institutions … People have been without water for 25 days.”