Sabotage Worsens Lebanon’s Electricity Crisis

Union employees at the Qadicha power plant in Lebanon announced yesterday in a statement that it had become impossible to perform almost any maintenance because of repeated attacks on electrical lines and inadequate security, leading to power failures. According to the statement, the consequence of this situation will be further degradation and more acute power rationing in the country. The union said that it understands the anger and frustration of Lebanese citizens, but that it cannot tolerate the attacks and repeated threats faced by employees of the plant.

In a statement, Electricite du Liban (EDL) explained that power cuts are a consequence of the need for long hours of indispensable maintenance during the summer, resulting from high temperatures and excessive loads on the power grid.  EDL insisted that citizens “remain calm and avoid acts of sabotage as this would not contribute to the improvement in power supply.”

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In addition, Minister of Labor Selim Jreissati met yesterday with representatives of the General Confederation of Lebanese Workers (CGTL) and a delegation of the Laborers Electricite du Liban.  CGTL President Ghassan Ghosn said after the meeting that he had discussed a bill with Mr. Jreissati that would implement a competitive application process for the government, with civil service department exams, to allow EDL temporary workers to enter the public institution as full-time employees. “It is through this agreement that the temporary employees have agreed to end their three-month strike and this problem should be solved in the next two days,” Ghosn said.

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