Posts Tagged ‘Jeddah drain system’

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When a situation gets so complicated, when hope vanishes and concerned people feel boiling anger inside; that’s a time for a leader to step up and rearrange the scene.

This is almost a historical lesson. Whether we are talking about religions, politics, businesses, or any group of people who come together for a shared purpose, when things reach the level of ‘total mess’, a leader intervention is inevitable.

However, this intervention is crucial and could cause significantly contradicting results. On one hand, such intervention could resurrect the lost hope, refocus the distracted views, and in some cases, gives back the sense of justice. On the other hand, some poor leaders’ interventions could push the matter more out of hand, emphasis the sense of loss, and just kill the hope and foster disloyalty.

King Abduallah, the custodian of the two holy mosques, intervention yesterday just came in the right time and it is definitely a reviving hope type of intervention. Jeddah residents’ anger was not only caused by the losses generated by the flood, but it was majorly caused by the feeling that there is no one admitting the responsibility of the city poor infrastructure, no one admitting the failure of planning and projects management, and caused by the city officials ignorance to at least step out and apologize.

King Abduallah provided all that in his yesterday intervention and in his orders to form a committee to investigate the real causes of the tragedy and to find out those responsible for the city hideous infrastructure status.

I am ready to take this as an indication that my city learned from its mistakes. Unfortunately, it learned the hard way!


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After a compulsory absence from this blog for about two weeks; I am back. I was in China for a business trip and as surprising as might sounds, all social networking sites are censored out in China. No blogs, no Facebook, no Twitter, and no Youtube.

Anyway, leave all this for other posts; I am planning to write about this trip and about what we can learn from China. In the matter of fact, I was planning to start blogging about China right away, but I changed my mind after seeing what is happening in my beloved city; Jeddah. Although I got a glimpse of the news, I did not expect the situation to be that bad … that devastating!

If anybody wishes to write a management book about project management failures, he will find plenty of examples in this aged bride of the red sea; Jeddah. Project management failures, this is my only explanation to what happened in Jeddah this past week.

Millions and millions of riyals have been spent on projects that promised state of the art infrastructure to the long time forgotten city and guess what; those projects could not stand four hours of rain!

If you are a resident of this city, or ever been there in the last five years, you have all the right to wonder and ask; what are those companies digging out each and every street in the city doing? Where is the long time promised water draining system that every now and then one of those city officials comes out and smile in the front of camera flashes to state that we finished 60%, 70%, 80% of the system!! So can you please tell me how an 80% completed project to drain water floods could not stand a shower of water? And hey, how come a project that took five years and millions of riyals to complete like King Abduallah road turn to be a swimming pool of death?

I believe that the situation is self-explanatory. Most, if not all, projects carried out in this city are big … big failures. Most of them are over budgeted, usually passes any reasonable time constraints, completed in poor quality, and it is clear that they do not know anything about contingency planning! Now these are the corners of project management and, forgive the language, our city planners sucks at all of them!

Now thanks God we are not on the way of any tsunami or typhoon … otherwise, a city named Jeddah would become a history by now …  Having said that, watching the below videos gives you the impression that a tsunami has just passed from here … what a poor city!


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