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Garbage truck used to transport water bottles

Cleaning workers, salesmen to be deported for flouting health rules

  • Water bottles being offloaded from a garbage truckImage Credit: Youtube screengrab
  • Water bottles being offloaded from a garbage truckImage Credit: Sabq

Manama: Authorities in Saudi Arabia have arrested foreign workers in a cleaning company after they used a municipality garbage truck to transport bottles of drinking water to a grocery shop in Makkah.

A Saudi citizen recorded the illegal operation on his mobile camera and posted it, prompting the authorities to launch an investigation.

The probe found out that the water bottles were left in the tent city of Mina in the outskirts of Makkah where more than 2.3 million pilgrims congregated for five days as part of the annual Haj rituals.


Following the departure of the pilgrim, people in charge of the tents usually take the items that had not been used or consumed by the pilgrims or leave them for the municipality to take them to a designated area as part of a massive cleaning of Mina.

“However, the driver of the garbage truck and the workers with him employed by the company contracted by the municipality to help clean Mina transported the bottles to the shop where they will be sold,” Othman Abu Baker Mali, the spokesperson for the municipality of Makkah, said.

“The driver and the workers are remanded in police custody ahead of legal procedures and their deportation. The grocery shop was shut down and the salesmen will also face legal action and will be deported. All the bottles transported in unhealthy conditions were seized.”

The spokesperson commended the Saudi citizen for the video that helped the municipality discover the misuse of the garbage truck and identify people involved in illegal activities.