By Mariam Muttawa.
Tripoli, 5 September 2013:
As water cuts spread in Tripoli and people stock up on supplies of bottled water, shopkeepers . . .[restrict]across the capital are hiking prices.
This afternoon, a seven-litre bottle had gone up to LD 2 from LD 1, with many outlets across the capital selling 1.5 litre bottles for LD 1.
Almost all of Tripoli is now without water, after being hit by cuts. The city centre has had no water for the past two days. Shortages have spread, although many residents were unaware of the issue because they have large water tanks.
Residents in Drebi, Hay Demashque, Hay Al Andalus, Ben Ashour and even Sabaa this morning reported water flow down to a trickle, if at all, as they used up the dregs of the tanks.
Not everywhere has been affected. Despite the cuts, some public gardens, including those in Bu Sleem, were still being watered with sprinklers last night.
Coming on top of continued electricity outages, anger at the cuts is growing in the city. Last night there was an impromptu demonstration in Martyrs Square demanding Congress sack Prime Minister Ali Zeiden and his government.
Frustrated residents said that the situation was intolerable and that they had had to live with power outages of up to five hours at a time in parts of Tripoli since the end of Ramadan.
Earlier in the day, Zeidan had said that the water and electricity cuts were the result of the oil strikes. However, the water problems would be over within hours, he promised.
That has not proved the case.