Lebanon reverses decision on Daylight Saving, amid confusion on two different timezones
CNN —Lebanon’s government has walked back a controversial decision to delay winter clock changes by a month, after last week’s announcement by caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati sparked exasperation and confusion in a country already gripped by economic crisis.
Mikati’s plan to postpone Daylight Saving until April 20 (following the Muslim holy month of Ramadan), rather than introducing it on March 25, was rejected by several churches and media organizations, and caused chaos in a population that woke up to two different timezones.
“Let us be clear.
The problem is not a matter of summer or winter timings … the problem is the gap in the presidency in the first place.
As prime minister, I do not hold any responsibility for this gap,” Mikati said.
I certainly did not make the decision with the intention of being sectarian or religious.”Caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati chairs a meeting in downtown Beirut, on March 27.
In some cases the debate took on a sectarian nature.
Politics in Lebanon is sharply sectarian, with seats in parliament allocated by religion.
The decision prompted widespread revolt, with two TV channels going ahead with the clock changes in protest.
Some Lebanese also found the funny side of the episode.
A clip circulating on social media showed a digital clock at Beirut-Rafic Hariri International Airport displaying two different times; on one side the clock flashes with the time of 10:05, the other side shows 9:05.
At a cafe in Beirut on Saturday evening, a Reuters journalist reported overhearing one customer ask: “Will you follow the Christian or Muslim clock starting tomorrow?”