Jean Gebran: "We dispelled brokers
and we insist on reviving the public service culture without bribery or extortion."
The Chairman of the Board of Directors, Director General of the Beirut and Mount Lebanon Water Corporation, Engineer Jean Gebran, considered that the success of the public administration in implementing the projects entrusted to it is a success for all citizens, calling for the embrace of a law culture and participation with the institution in the current path to develop it and increase its productivity, because there is no solution to water problems except an effective institution, as there is no salvation for Lebanon except through strong institutions and state.
The words of Eng. Gebran came in a dialogue meeting about the reality of water and the projects undertaken by the institution a year after he took over the presidency of its board of directors, at the invitation of St. Peter's Baskinta School in Fr. Bernard Hobeika Hall, and a crowd of the people of the region and those involved, in the presence of the mayor of Baskinta George Alam and the principal Antoine Medawar.
Gebran presented an outline of what has been achieved to date and the main themes of the water system development plan.
He said that the institution seeks to be close to the people and has thus put a number for direct contact (1713) so that any citizen within 24 hours can report a complaint or malfunction and communicate with officials. He added: We want to revive the public service culture that does not require the citizen to pay any bribes or the employee practices any extortion. What concerns us is that citizens regain their confidence in the institution and make sure that it is close to them and works to secure the public interest.
Gebran also reminded the subscribers that EBML, which increased the annual fee forty-five thousand liras, proceeded to install it in four installments after it mandatory to be paid upfront, and he issued a 90% exemption for fines. In addition, he announced a new delay allowance of three years, during which the late person gets his right to water.
The Chairman also added that the contractors are now blacklisted because they were closer to the brokers who saw in their work only a lucrative benefit, they were not interested at all in meeting the required standards, foremost of which is transparency, public safety and quality. Gebran also pointed out that administrative measures were taken against a number of dishonest employees who were using their references, but these references did not exert any pressure because the administration anticipated them and clarified the objective reasons for the measures that were taken.
As for the five-year plan that is being implemented in the year 2022, it aims to cover all the scope of the institution's work in Beirut and Mount Lebanon with water and includes the construction of new networks and modernization of existing networks, desalination of wells in Beirut, tracers to the first water from the south, ending work on the dam of Jannah and drawing its water to Beirut, and the completion of work on the Bekaata Dam.
Lastly, Eng. Gebran regretted that water projects were involved in the political war, noting that one of the deputies criticized the construction of the Qaismani Dam in 2015 and said that this dam would not be eligible for water conservation. But the reality has proven the effectiveness of this dam, which was inaugurated last year and is currently providing water to (24) villages. The director general of EBML hoped that what happened in relation to the Al Qaismani Dam would not be repeated in other locations because the disruption in the result will not be reflected negatively except on the citizens.