By Sami Zaptia.
Tripoli, 27 July 2014:
Tripoli has been plunged into long hours of darkness over the last two after the . . .[restrict]Tripoli South gas power station was damaged by the fighting in Tripoli by opposing militias.
The continued sporadic clashes and falling of artillery, mainly but not exclusively, around military barracks, the southern half of Airport Road, the fringes of Tripoli airport, Salahaldeen, Siyahiya and Janzur have had a large effect on life, fuel and power supplies.
The damage to the power station has lost GECOL 500 MWs of power generation which will lead to long hours of power cuts to most parts of Tripoli, the General Electricity Company of Libya warned in a statement.
GECOL further warns that the continued attacks on its property and on its employees will make it more difficult for it and its maintenance departments to maintain power supplies.
Over in the city of Benghazi, which has been witnessing long periods of fighting between the so-called Dignity movement led by retired General Hafter against the so called Islamist movements, has also been experiencing long hours of power cuts.
The more persistent and widespread fighting there has led to various damage to the electricity infrastructure, including the damage to electricity pylons.
In Tripoli, the loss of electricity Friday at the Khoms power station which supplies power to the water pumps for Tripoli, the Ministry of Water Resources has reported, has also now led to the loss of water supply to almost the whole of Tripoli.
The Ministry of Water Resources says, however, that it expects normal water supplies to be returned to Tripoli within two days.
To add to people’s woes, the loss of electricity to most parts of Tripoli has in turn also led to either widespread loss or disruption of the internet service.
Meanwhile, in Tripoli, car queues at petrol stations snake round roads for miles and miles in the hope of filling up their tanks, with most petrol stations not operating, either awaiting protection from security forces or because no fuel has been able to be delivered from the Airport Road depot because of the fighting. Those queuing wait more in hope than any real short term expectation of getting any fuel.
The lack of diesel specifically has meant that even those who have invested in electric generators are unable to operate them.
The shortage of fuel deliveries over the last four weeks as well as the onset of the fasting month of Ramadan, has meant that the city of Tripoli at times resembles a ghost town with shops closed and roads empty of traffic.
For a brief period even mobile and internet cards disappeared from retailers before deliveries could be made to retailers.
Some foodstuffs and vegetable have also started to become scarce, not because of the lack of stocks in Tripoli, suppliers and retailers informed Libya Herald, but because of the inability to deliver due to either the fuel shortage or the fighting in the wholesale market area of Kremia.