x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

Thoughts of a manager who worked in Libya

Our readers-turned-writers also comment on kindness to strangers, cruelty to animals, the treatment of jaywalkers, and more.

A Libyan family walks past a charred car in Benghazi. A reader who worked as a construction project manager in Benghazi and other Libyan cities expresses the hope that the current crisis will end favourably. Saeed Khan / AFP
A Libyan family walks past a charred car in Benghazi. A reader who worked as a construction project manager in Benghazi and other Libyan cities expresses the hope that the current crisis will end favourably. Saeed Khan / AFP

I refer to the David Clay's opinion article Out of Qaddafi's shadow, Benghazi's civil society blooms (May 31).

I am glad to be informed that volunteers and activists of all nations and citizens of all ages have the courage, insistence, passion and energy in these days to put themselves to the task of shaping a new, free, democratic and modern Libya.

As the project manager of a leading Turkish contracting company between 1987 and1992 in such construction sites in Libya as Brega, Tripoli, Benghazi, Raslanuf, Ajdabiya and Misurata, I witnessed major improvements and rehabilitation in the lives of Libyan people through our constructional activities. These included the design and building of 2,700 villas for the Libyan people, mosques, shopping malls, schools, healthcare units, water reservoirs and roadworks.

But I felt deeply sorry as I watched on TV and read in the newspapers that the February uprising has caused major traumas for the Libyan people.

Nevertheless, I am totally hopeful that there will be changes and these will be profound for the political and economic conditions of the country and that the lives of Libyan people will be much better since all human beings deserve to be treated properly with honour and respect.

Ali Sedat Budak, Abu Dhabi

The joys of giving a lift to a stranger

Today I gave a complete stranger a lift. It was not an act of heroism, nor something to be proud of, it was just a random act of kindness.

I saw a young woman trudging along the pavement with her heavy bags in the heat of the day and decided to help her.

The most rewarding part of the experience was not her gratitude but rather what it felt like to help someone for nothing. It cost me nothing except a little time and fuel, both of which I can well afford.

I have now pledged to perform these good deeds more frequently, because I am one of the small percentage of expatriates who lives an easy life, and is in a position which allows me to help others. I don't really know how the woman I helped felt, nor can I guarantee that she'll remember this in years to come but that's not the point anyway.

I am sure there are other souls out there who share my sentiments.

Philippa Charnaud, Abu Dhabi

Punish those who abuse animals

Lions and cheetahs have been brought in illegally again. Someone knows who owns these animals. Will we read in the paper about their prosecution? I doubt it.

I read that the British man who kicked a dog was fined Dh1,000. (Man who kicked neighbour's dog is fined, May 31) but how is the dog surviving outside in 45 degrees of heat? Isn't that cruel and shouldn't the owners be fined ?

I have lived here for 18 years and have never once seen in the newspaper anyone fined for mistreating an animal or illegally owning an exotic creature. I thought there was a strict law in place or don't animals matter?

Surely someone should start to make an example of people who abuse animals and then just maybe things will progress in a positive way.

Lori L, Dubai

Arguing for the German way

I refer to the news article Capital to get nuclear brief (May 31). The discussion goes like this: atomic power is clean and lovely. Then a little voice in the corner pipes up and says: what happens if there is an accident? What happens if there's a large earthquake or a terrorist attack or some people at the nuclear plant do their job badly? Consider following the sensible path of the German people who are closing down all their atomic power plants and are finding new ways to deliver energy.

Michael S, Germany

Double standard in rape case

I refer to Colin Randall's opinion article A bizarre double standard as France agonises over DSK (May 29) which provided great insight into this whole sordid affair.

Reading the French press, it's almost become a contest for them to see how many times they can mention the woman's name in one sentence. They don't do this in the Georges Tron's rape case.

RI, Abu Dhabi

Work still needed on crossings

I refer to the front page news article 2,300 jaywalkers fined (May 31). This is excellent. But equally, pedestrian crossings (zebra crossings) need to be respected by motorists. The authorities need to review pedestrian crossings and mark them properly. A good example to follow is how they're marked in the UK.

Ziad Q, Dubai