By Jamie Prentis.
Tunis, 8 July 2017:
Thousands of people in Sebha will benefit from a drive to fix the town’s serious water shortage, made worse by the soaring summer temperatures.
The UN’s International Organisation for Migration has helped rebuild 18 wells in a dozen of the town’s 14 neighbourhoods. The European Union-funded project included new electric pumps.
Two local contractors did the work, supervised by the municipality and the town’s Water and Waste Company.
Engineer Mohammad Aboul-Qassem Yaqa explained: “This support comes at a critical time when the Water and Waste Water Company is in need of such support to help us maintain this essential service to the people of the city”.
His comments were echoed by Bidad Gansu the Presidency Council’s local government minister.
“We are confident that the people of Sebha and the south in general urgently need these important projects, especially in these difficult times,” he said.
Locals have long said the rehabilitation of their water wells had to be a priority. Sebha’s mayor Hamed Rafeh has previously complained of problems with drinking water supplies and sewerage works.
The EU’s Libya Bettina Muscheidt said: “Libya’s people cannot wait. Families across the country are in dire need of services. They want a return to normality.”
She added: “The EU will continue supporting, through similar local initiatives, the economic and political stabilisation of the south of the country”.
The IOM’s Libya chief Othman Belbeisi praised everyone involved and thanked them for “their continuous support as this project will facilitate access to water for thousands of people”.