x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

Landlords should accept monthly rent cheques

Letter writers comment on The case of the property agent who absconded with a fortune in rent money, taxi drivers' honesty and outrage over anti-Islam film.

A protester covers his face to protect himself from tear gas near Tahrir Square in Cairo. A reader comments that the bigoted movie that has sparked worldwide protests does not represent most Americans. Amr Abdallah Dalsh / Reuters
A protester covers his face to protect himself from tear gas near Tahrir Square in Cairo. A reader comments that the bigoted movie that has sparked worldwide protests does not represent most Americans. Amr Abdallah Dalsh / Reuters

The case of the property agent who absconded with a fortune in rent money simply underlines how badly the rent system here needs modernising (Dubai con man fled to Beirut after Dh6m subletting scam, September 13).

It is standard almost everywhere else in the world for tenants to pay rent monthly, direct to the landlord via direct debit, but in the UAE landlords still stubbornly insist on huge cheques in advance.

Landlords are under the impression that all expatriates get their rent paid by their company and have no difficulties finding the massive lump sums required. But this is far from the norm now. People should all be able to pay rent monthly without needing to take an interest-bearing bank loan.

Changing the law to give everyone the right to pay rent monthly if they wish would not only do away with annual rent cheques and so prevent future scams like the current one, but it would make renting easier and less stressful for everybody.

Landlords need to understand that their properties would actually become more desirable to renters with the barrier of single-cheque rent payment removed.

It would also give tenants some leverage against the many (sadly) bad landlords who simply cash the cheque for a year's rent and then ignore their tenants' requests for maintenance.

Jazz Whyman, Dubai

Where's the reward for this honesty?

I was encouraged to read about the honest actions of the taxi driver in your article Honest Omar and the return of the Saudi's briefcase (September 13). But perhaps the government should have rewarded him more?

If it did, such a reward would encourage other taxi drivers to take similar action if confronted with the same situation of left luggage.

Farid Ahmed, Dubai

Dh500 for returning Dh120,000? I'm sure that has left a bitter taste in this honest taxi driver's mouth.

Come on dear tourist, you could become popular among your family and friends by rewarding him accordingly for his honesty. It's never too late.

Maggie Sal, Dubai

Killings in Libya were tragic ...

Your article, Who lost Libya? The US must now worry about losing Syria (September 14) was meaningful and thought provoking. The recent killing of Chris Stevens, the US ambassador to Libya, and subsequent protests throughout the Arab world, is a sad state of affairs.

After assisting in the overthrow of the former Libyan leader, Muammar Qaddafi, the US was confident it had a grip in Libya. This grip is now shattered because of the recent brutal killings. And the fear for what happens next in Syria is quite natural.

K Ragavan, India

... but image of killing tasteless

Exactly where is the compassion shown for the family of the deceased US Ambassador Chris Stevens, depicted on the front cover of your newspaper on September 12, bloodied and helpless moments before he passed away?

This is not the first time The National has neglected to think of the family of a deceased person or the homes of which The National is delivered to for children to come across such horrific tragedies. For the family of Mr Stevens, heaven has surely gained an amazing individual. Surely The National should think about such consequences before printing such imagery.

V Ciotti Rashad, Abu Dhabi

Shared outrage over absurd video

It is such a tragedy that a fraudulent film by a hateful, fraudulent provocateur could disrupt the delicate peace in a nascent democracy (US ambassador's death: first blood to the bigots on both sides, September 13).

The hardest part is how Americans can help our Muslim brothers and sisters in the Middle East to understand that even though our laws will not allow us to prosecute anyone for antireligious speech, the vast majority of Americans are absolutely outraged by the intolerance, racism and bigotry expressed in that film.

People also need to understand that this film was shown once publicly and had no distribution in the US. It was only posted on the internet and only a handful of Americans were even aware of it. Any Americans who have seen it think it's absurdly amateurish.

No one in the US other than the idiots who created the film takes it seriously. It most certainly does not reflect the views of the vast majority of Americans.

I am so sad for all the damage this has done to Americans serving abroad, and to our Muslim brothers and sisters, particularly those who have been manipulated by this obvious attempt to disrupt the peaceful development of the nascent democracies in the region.

Andrea Ploscowe, US