x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 22 January 2018

The bland leading the band?

A reader takes issue with criticisms of rock band U2. Other letter topics: fire insurance, the banks and rules on shop signage.

Criticism labelling the Irish supergroup U2 as bland is misplaced, according to a reader. Charles Sykes / AP
Criticism labelling the Irish supergroup U2 as bland is misplaced, according to a reader. Charles Sykes / AP

Fire demonstrates need for insurance

It is sad that the residents referred to in Insurers reject claim for flat fire (October 2) lost everything, and it's human nature to want to blame someone.

Unfortunately, nobody knows who threw the cigarette that started the fire. However, it is that person who is ultimately the one responsible, not the building owner.

Perhaps tenants will learn something from this and buy renters' insurance.

I know such insurance is not as common here as in other countries, but it should be a government requirement. It certainly would have helped the tenants in this situation.

I hope local charities can help these tenants.

K Ebertowski, Dubai


Loyalty to store goes unrewarded

I am writing to warn unsuspecting customers about my experience with a supermarket loyalty card.

According to my online statement, I had accumulated three 50-dirham vouchers owed to me for shopping over a seven-month period. However, I did not get the vouchers.

I complained to the supermarket and insisted that the call centre create and save a screen shot of my online statement.

After two days, I received a call claiming that my statement was wrong and that no vouchers were due to me.

When I went back and accessed my account to make a printout, I was shocked to discover that what had been a three-page statement was now only two pages. It also reflected the "fact" that no vouchers were due to me.

When I called the complaints centre to ask them to refer to the screen shot, I was told their manager had asked them to delete it.

So much for loyalty.

N Zia, Dubai

Banks should just cut their losses

Regarding your editorial Banks need time to implement lending rules (October 3), no government should help banks.

Banks must deal with their own problems and take responsibility for these changes.

They should just dump the loans in the secondary market, like any other bank in the world would, and write off their losses.

Abdulla Al Binali, Abu Dhabi

Light sentences don't fit the crime

I am writing in reference to Four jailed for trying to kill boy, 15, with swords (October 2).

I must say that the punishment hardly fits the crime, which was attempted murder.

Jeremy Weeks, Abu Dhabi

Less than a year in jail for attempted murder? Amazing. I Fletcher, Dubai


Case of the bland leading the band?

So, in Revel in the ridiculous (October 2), music reviewer Oliver Good reckons U2 are guilty of pushing "bland, catch-all sentimentality".

Has he actually ever been to a U2 gig?

He is probably right in saying that about Coldplay, though.

Jonny Lowe, Abu Dhabi

Signage rule hurts small businesses

I have been living in the UAE for more than 20 years and I have witnessed the country going through considerable changes.

Although some aspects of life have improved, there are days when I feel that some of the changes are not positive.

As a businesswoman for more than two decades, I cannot comprehend why little effort is made to encourage small businesses and help them to survive and ride out the storm of recession.

The new rule to streamline sign boards - as first reported in Abu Dhabi storefront signage set for revamp (February 9) - is a good example of unnecessary and inconvenient change.

I don't know where this idea has come from, but all it will achieve is to force the business community to fork out unnecessary large sums to replace perfectly good signs.

The only people who will benefit are the signmakers. Having sign boards with the same design all over the city will give Abu Dhabi a dull and unattractive look.

The type of lighting that is required is also very high maintenance and leaves a lot to be desired.

My neighbours had to fork out Dh10,000 to replace a small sign board.

This may be a small amount to pay for a large company, but it could create further hardship for smaller businesses.

In our case, the company name is very long, and the space allocated is so small that the name of the company on the sign board will not be legible to any prospective passing customers.

I would love to know the reasons behind this rule.

H Farley, Abu Dhabi