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Reality and Future of the Water Resources in Yemen
The issue of water resources and supplies does attract enormous interests within the official and public forums and centers due to the relationship it holds in general with the whole living status of Yemen's population.
Upon this direction, several symposiums, conferences and events took place for discussing this issue. Such interests reached its highest when Yemen's Consultative Council of the Presidential Office placed the issue as its most important priority that fully required, from all official and public authorities, deriving some positive and effective results.
These should consequently lead to limitation of water's excessive utility on one hand, while on the other hand work towards development of water resources, through construction of water dams and obstruction, and organizing utility of the water potentials, reserves and wealth.
Through three consecutive sessions of the Consultative Council, the members reviewed five working papers submitted by the Engineer Gamal M. Abdo, Director of the Public Authority for Water Resources. His report; as summed up through these papers; indicated the water status in the Yemen Republic through the facts and figures related to the water resources. It also included the challenges, objectives and procedures, or, measures required for advocating on the appropriate utility and limiting the currently adopted random exploitation of water-either through agricultural, housing or industrial application.
The report also referred to the necessity of expanding in the building and construction of water dams, reservoirs and preservation blocks. These should be implemented within the various provinces of the Republic.
Besides, one of the working papers specifically referred to the alarming depreciation of water in Sana'a basin. It also handled the alternatives to be adapted for the availability of water supply as needed for Sana'a city.
The Council members also listened and reviewed two other working papers. These were separately read and submitted by:
(1) Dr. Bamatraf, Deputy Minister of Agriculture & Irrigation concerning the great concerns of the Ministry on the issue; and
(2) Mr. Ismaeel Al-Ganad from the Yemeni Public Authority for Mineral resources concerning the latest geological survey on water in Yemen. The paper included some hydro-geological maps of the Republic, which related to the study of water resources in the basin of Al-maseela in Hadramout provinces. Besides, there was author study on the community settlements in the region so as to identify their requirement of water supply.
Finally, members of the Consultative Council listened and reviewed the last working paper by Dr. Amin A. Mayoob, Director of the Public Corporation of Electricity & Water. He verified that this government authority implemented during the years 1992-1997 on thousand seven hundred eighty three projects that were distributed within all provinces of the Republic (blocking units and dams). During 1997 alone, 217 projects were executed costing around 123,595,2758 rials. Most of such projects were specifically concerned with the water dams and blocking units; while some others that were conducted; related to digging of wells for supply of fresh water needed for consumption by certain communities living in distantly rural and out-reached villages. Thereby, the concerns and efforts exerted by the Consultative Council were to be collectively considered a progressive step within the framework of re-enforcement of this vivid issue.
Upon final conclusion of the sessions, the Council raised its report to the President of the Republic.
The Report contained recommendations, which clearly indicated immediate procurement, or, initiation of the procedures, which shall to aim towards resolving the problems arising from this issue. Besides, suggestions on new policies were included in these recommendations. These are to be implemented within the framework of the water-sector Authority and in series of processes that shall alleviate the burdens from the citizens, and forwarding the services of rural water-supply to the various villages, districts and boroughs of the Republic. These activities are to be undertaken through the expansion in the current construction process of water blocking units and dams for purposes of providing drinking water to the houses of the community in-concerns.
As in the second place, the projects should be objected towards the provision of water for agricultural applications, as well as, encouraging the various local communities for participating in establishing similar water projects around and within their living settlements. Other emphasis stated through the Report's text of recommendation was directed on establishing various networks of sanitary sewerage within all rural regions of the Republic.
At the same time, all media and communication networks are obliged to initiate and advocate (on TV, Radio, Press, Posters, leaflets, other easily reachable facilities) appropriated national programs that are mainly objected towards cultural and/ or public awareness of all concerned (rural) communities residing; within the Republic of Yemen.
Reference: paper-works submitted in September 1997 to The Consultative Council of the Presidential Office Article prepared by: Mohammed Al-Arashi Source: "Economic" bulletin; Issuabel half monthly By Yemen's Saba News Agency; Issue No. 95 of 15/10/1997