Capital’s residents want better roads, sanitation services

27-08-2013 12:26 AM

Ammon News - by Muath Freij and Gaelle Sundelin | The Jordan Times

AMMAN — Residents of the capital are looking for municipal election candidates who can improve the city's services, with road maintenance and sanitation topping the list of urgent needs.

In interviews with The Jordan Times, some of the capital's 2.47 million residents had mixed feelings about Tuesday's municipal polls.

While some want to vote for candidates who can effect positive change, others are pessimistic about candidates' agendas and do not expect anything new from the next municipal council.

Ahmad Abed Rabbu, a resident of the west Amman suburb of Wadi Seer, said his area lacks several services, expressing optimism that the elections will bring a municipal council that addresses these issues.

"The area needs public parks, playgrounds or sports clubs to enable children to play safely. This district does not have even one park. Because of the lack of such facilities, children are forced to play in the streets," the father of five told The Jordan Times.

He said the Greater Amman Municipality (GAM) owns several plots of lands in Wadi Seer, one of which can be turned into a park.

Abed Rabbu said he plans to vote in Tuesday's elections for candidates who are serious about improving municipal services.

Dareen Hiyari, a resident of Marj Al Hamam, said the area needs a number of services, but she decided not to vote this year, because "nothing will change".

"I have been trying to appeal to the municipality for the past six years to pay attention to issues such as lack of sewage solutions, road work and cleanliness," the 29-year-old added.

“Driving is complicated; there are a lot of accidents and the streets are dirty everywhere,” she said.

Jamal Sanduqa, an employee at a store in Amman, noted that the capital needs more side streets.

"Backstreets will help decrease the number of traffic jams in the capital," Sanduqa added, noting that he had his mind set on voting for candidates with "realistic solutions" to this problem.

Taxi driver Rateb Manaseer agreed with Sanduqa, noting that Amman suffers from "horrible traffic jams".

"GAM should construct new bridges and tunnels to alleviate the road congestion in the capital," he said.

Manaseer added that some of the capital's streets are not well paved, which damages cars and increases the possibility of accidents.

He also stressed that some areas in the capital are not well-covered by public transport.

"I hope that the next municipal council will be able to resolve these issues."

Kamal Rbeihat, a private sector employee, complained about the lack of sanitation services in certain Amman neighbourhoods.

"Some areas like Jabal Al Taj need more sanitation services. I only see GAM teams working in the morning, and that is not enough," he noted, adding that the municipality should plant more trees in these localities.

More work needs to be done in relation to the sewage network, Rbeihat said.

"Our area gets flooded in winter because of the rainfall. If there is a good sewage system, we will not face this problem," he noted.

Adnan Assaf, a resident of Marka in east Amman, said the main issue that concerns him is street vendors.

"Some streets are not safe for families because of these vendors. They block the entrance of several stores and make it difficult for people to walk on the pavement," he told The Jordan Times.

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