x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 January 2018

Libya's gun chaos

Other letters comment on fire safety, unfounded justifications for assault and other topics.

One reader returning to Libya finds that the machine gun is still the nation's arbiter of justice. (Mahmud Turkia / AFP)
One reader returning to Libya finds that the machine gun is still the nation's arbiter of justice. (Mahmud Turkia / AFP)

Sharjah building safety starts with better laws

I refer to your report Families homeless as fire guts tower (April 29). These kinds of infernos are becoming very common in Sharjah. As a result, hundreds of families are losing everything.

That is why the UAE needs to conduct a serious study on the increasing number of fire incidents, and suggest implementation of remedial measures.

For one, the material used in wall cladding might be helping to spread fire. It must therefore be made mandatory to use fireproof wall cladding in buildings.

In addition to that, sprinkler systems must be required in all high-rise buildings.

KV Shamsudheen, Sharjah

Justification for rape is ridiculous

I read the article Man ‘did not rape’ because his wife’s prettier (January 18). I cannot begin to articulate how disturbing this story is, and how many stereotypes and myths are being presented in court over this case.

Rape is most often committed against women who are given less power in society. It wouldn’t surprise me, then, if this man felt some of ownership over this women since she is his maid.

Studies show that the majority of women who are sexually assaulted are women who have disabilities. This isn’t often the image of attractiveness most people think of. I’ve also known of children as young as two years old to be raped, and older women who are seniors. Are they so attractive? Does attractiveness count in these situations?

I’m not making a formal judgement over whether this man raped his maid or not. However, I am concerned about how the case is being presented in court.

Angela Jeffrey, Canada

Consumer prices continue to rise

When I first came to Dubai in 1977, it was a bargain centre for electronics, cameras, watches and many other consumer electronics, and that was at a time when VAT in England was only 15 per cent.

Now, 35 years later the price gap narrows, Price gap narrows with US and Europe (April 29). And now the VAT rate in England is 20 per cent.

So, what happened in the intervening years, when the prices in the UAE went up and up.

Jeremy Weeks, Abu Dhabi

Teach children to respect, not fight

Why is it that we always think about solutions after a crisis happens, and not before (Violence in schools: the truth behind a tragedy, April 29).

Bullying is everywhere; I believe violence is the only language that we communicate to children within the schools.

What’s the solution? Teach children how to respect each other.

Michelle Salem, Dubai

Libya’s rule by gun is doomed to fail

I could not agree more with your Comment piece, Libya’s kidnappings for ransom show a state mired in chaos (April 27).

We were so elated to come back to our workshops in Swani, Libya, only to be threatened by some guy with a machine gun. He said he would kidnap us and demand ransom if we returned to our legally-owned property.

I will only start respecting the new “owner” of my property when he drops his machine gun to talk with me like a man.

Name withheld by request

Move to improve education quality

There is a serious lack of research culture in all UAE universities (UAE University provost resigns, April 27). That is why UAE students need to step up their game.

But they can’t do it alone; local companies and government education agencies can work to support results-orientated education, rather than advertising on CNN.

Hormaz Dastoor, Abu Dhabi

‘Innovation’ talk no substitute for work

These comments have no validity (Talking of innovation is only a beginning, April 29).

First, a PhD does not mean anything except that the person has a deep understanding of very little. A PhD does not automatically confer any expertise beyond this narrow view. To give value to a person based on his or her PhD is to ask for trouble. Making decisions based on this “expertise” is not a good thing.

Mark Batey may talk, may advise, may consult. However the reality is that his revenues go up and his personal wealth increases.

Tom Pattillo, Canada