January 16, 2020

AMMAN — Authorities on Thursday resolved three major violations on the strategic carrier of the Disi Water Conveyance Project in Karak Governorate, according to a government official.

The violations were reported in Qatraneh, 100 kilometres south Amman, the official said, adding that technical teams from the Ministry of Water and Irrigation and the Disi Water Company removed illegal pipes and repaired damaged components of the project.

“The three violations entailed illegal pipes installed to divert the Disi project’s water to various locations, where water tankers were filled with the Disi water and sold,” the ministry official said.

The violations did not result in disruption in the water supply from the Disi project, which is one of the Kingdom’s strategic water resources.

Fifty-five per cent of Amman’s water supply originates from the Disi project, the official said, noting that hundreds of thousands of subscribers in Zarqa, Rusaifeh, Ajloun, Irbid, Mafraq and Jerash also receive water from the Disi aquifer, located some 350 kilometres southeast of Amman near the Jordanian-Saudi border.

“Authorities are tracking down the offenders,” the official said, urging the public to cooperate with the authorities and report violations on the water network and resources across the board.

This is not the first time the Disi project has witnessed deliberate acts of sabotage.

In August of last year, pumping from the Disi project was partially suspended after a group of unknown vandals sabotaged a facility that stores water from the project’s wells in Mudawarrah, Maan Governorate.

The ministry said at the time that it was the largest and gravest violation that the project witnessed since its construction started in 2009, according to the official.

Several coordination meetings between the ministry and security agencies have been held to draft measures that prevent further sabotage and violations to the project’s infrastructure. However, violations on the project’s facilities and components still persist.

During the first six months of 2019, the ministry recorded 61 violations and acts of sabotage on the Disi project’s facilities, despite state-assigned patrols to protect them, according to the ministry.

Installed on a build-operate-transfer basis by the Turkish company GAMA, a 325-kilometre pipeline was constructed to carry water from the ancient Disi aquifer in southern Jordan to Amman.

The project was launched in 2013 and water now flows to Amman via a pipeline, which passes through several water stations on its way through Maan, Tafileh, Karak, Madaba and the capital, and finally heading north via the national carrier.