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A reader comments that Mawaqif system is doing more harm than good

Letters also deal with issues on India-Pakistan relations, child car seats and cleanliness in pedestrian underpasses.
A motorist uses a Mawaqif terminal. The relentless expansion of the paid-parking system has brought little satisfaction to drivers; one reader says the scheme has changed life - for the worse. Nicole Hill / The National
A motorist uses a Mawaqif terminal. The relentless expansion of the paid-parking system has brought little satisfaction to drivers; one reader says the scheme has changed life - for the worse. Nicole Hill / The National

Your front-page story, Parking scheme hailed for clearing streets (May 2), praises the introduction of paid parking in residential areas.

I live in a street where the Mawaqif residents' permit scheme came into force this week.

Previously I could always park outside my building without issue, but now I have to pay Dh800 a year for the privilege.

Friday was the only day of the week when there was ever a parking problem around where I live, and yet the Mawaqif leaflet that was given to me, on the day the scheme was introduced, advises me that the residential permits apply from Saturday to Thursday only.

Also, when purchasing our permits we were told that they cover a small area, but no one could tell me the boundaries of this zone.

There are many other issues as well. Do I have to pay if I park at our local shops? And why are there no visitor permits for when friends come to visit us?

Life in these quiet, residential streets has certainly changed this week - and it has changed for the worse.

Some of our neighbours are now talking about moving elsewhere because of this ill-thought-out scheme.

Parking permits are indeed clearing the streets - but not in a good way. They may just be breaking up long-established communities, too.

SM, Abu Dhabi

Jungle parking 24 hours a day

To see jungle parking in its full splendour come to sector E-1, from Hamdan Street to Corniche Road, between Liwa Street and Airport Road West. Mawaqif started here almost one year ago but since roughly October it has not been working at all, as the agents simply disappeared from this sector.

I spent 2000 Dhs in July to purchase two resident parking permits, and both have been totally useless for the last seven months.

We avoid going out for dinner or to visit friends simply because once we get home we will never get a parking place.

It's absolutely chaotic, 24 hrs a day.

M Martins, Abu Dhabi

Underpasses need to be kept clean

I refer to your story Dh 700m work on city tunnels to start soon (May 3).

Why doesn't the Municipality spend some of that money on the cleaning and maintaining of the pedestrian crossing tunnels or underpasses that are found throughout the city of Abu Dhabi?

It is amazing that these underpasses are so poorly maintained after millions have been spent to build them. Their condition is in total contrast to all the good work Abu Dhabi Municipality does around the city in caring for facilities such as parks and gardens as well as the Corniche and beaches.

Shamal Karim, Abu Dhabi

Hostility doesn't come from India

Mosharraf Zaidi is wrong to brand India as "Pakistan's hostile neighbour" (Bin laden episode - true test of US - Pakistan ties, May 4).

It is Pakistan that has been hostile, starting three wars and for decades encouraging, training and arming terrorists to attack India. The attack in Mumbai was the first time India captured a terrorist who confessed coming from Pakistan.

It is also known that Pakistan has been a base of operations for Lashkar-i-Taiba, Lashkar-i-Jhangvi and several other such outfits.

The mission to neutralise bin Laden succeeded only because Pakistani intelligence and the army were kept in the dark. The sad fact is that America has to depend on such an unreliable ally.

Mr Zaidi also reveals his lack of understanding when he states that India wants the US to maintain a presence in Pakistan to "back Indian interests rather than Pakistani interests". America is in Pakistan to back its own interests and not India's.

The vast majority of Pakistanis want the US to continue, because they fear a power struggle within the country between those who want peace and democracy and those bent on pursuing a fractious policy of hate against India.

If Pakistan wants good neighbourly relations India is ready. Pakistan must, however, first put its house in order.

PM Shah, Dubai

Using child seats is an act of love

I refer to your story Two children killed, two hurt as car overturns in Dubai (May 2). Here is another tragedy, the loss of two innocent lives. The question we must ask is whether the children were buckled in. The police reported that there were no child seats in the car. Parents must keep their children buckled in the rear seats and/or buckled in child safety seats.

Many people in this country, of various nationalities, believe that it is harsh discipline to insist that children are restrained.

It is the opposite. You show your child love and respect when you act like a parent should, and do what is right for your children's safety.

Everyone should wear seat belts, especially the little ones who cannot protect themselves.

Cora Yanacek, Abu Dhabi


Updated: May 5, 2011 04:00 AM

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