Muscat: Digging underground water wells for personal use without obtaining legal permits will deplete the strategic water reserve.
This digging of such wells is clear breach to the applicable instructions and laws and represents a violation that imposes the offenders to the legal accountability.
The Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Water Resources issued, last June, a ministerial decision forming an action team for curbing the phenomenon of unlicensed water wells.
The team has been assigned with preparing a plan and taking the legal actions necessary to get rid of the phenomenon, which has increased during the past years.
On the significance of the decision in regulating the water sector, Maqbool bin Hussain Al Rawahi, Director of Water Permits Department at the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Water Resources said that the decision would enhance the water control systems in the Sultanate of Oman and would preserve, develop and protect the water sources and ensures sustainability and management of water.
The decision would also enable the control teams perform their assigned duties and would accelerate the decision making in relation to the violations, he said, adding that the unlicensed digging of water wells affects the aflajs and existing water sources as most water wells do not meet the safety conditions.
Al Rawahi reaffirmed that the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Water Resources continues with granting permits for digging new water wells subjected to the law on protection of water wealth and its regulations.
He said that the team formed by the ministerial decisions comprises representatives of different departments.
The team would focus on preparation of the mechanism of monitoring the expatriate manpower operating in digging unlicensed water wells and control of the equipment for digging unlicensed well in violation to the applicable rules and conditions.
The main team in the various governorates which teams would work in accordance with the same applicable regulations and mechanisms.