City plan showed Zayed’s priorities

Readers says the latest injured cyclist shows safety must improve on the UAE's roads. Other views: Indian PM's CHOGM snub, the planning of early Abu Dhabi and curbing of National Day celebrations.

Dr Abdulrahman Makhlouf and Sheikh Zayed in 1974, planning how Abu Dhabi should look as it develops from a small coastal settlement into a fitting capital of the UAE. Photo: Courtesy National Centre for Documentation and Research
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Letters to the Editor

This is yet another tragic and needless accident. (Abu Dhabi triathlete in critical condition after being hit by car, November 10)

I pray it ends well for Medhi and his family, so he can ride again.

Sadly, this is not just about safe driving, training, awareness, or bike lanes, in my opinion. It is a far-reaching attitude problem that is only getting worse with time and technology. Speeding fines and speed cameras are not enough.

If truth be told, most roads are not even safe for pedestrians or joggers, since sidewalks don’t exist in so many places.

On top of that, road construction often makes walking or crossing roads very challenging, with unprotected pedestrians trying to “navigate” safely in a sea of speeding cars and overly aggressive or blatantly inconsiderate drivers

B P Fakhry, Dubai

I feel really sad to hear about another cyclist victim and I hope he recovers fully.

The government tries hard to make liveable cities but the mentality of the drivers doesn’t  follow or change. I wish organisations such as The National will campaign specifically on this issue until the roads are safe in UAE.

Jin, UAE

UAE lifts battered Filipino spirits

We Filipinos are grateful for the UAE’s generosity. (UAE to donate Dh37m worth of aid to Typhoon Haiyan victims. November 11)

In times like this, when the Filipino spirit is being challenged, news like this lifts up our spirit.

This is especially for those who have been most badly affected by the typhoon.

Gretchen Mandigma, Philippines

I would like to say thank you to the UAE. These are more blessings at a time the Philippines needs help.

Leoonor Macabugto, Abu Dhabi

India’s ‘principled’ snub to Sri Lanka

Indian prime minister Manmohan Singh's decision not to attend the Commonwealth Heads of Government meeting in Colombo this weekend was upsetting to many people within the country and outside. (Indian PM joins boycott of Sri Lanka Commonwealth summit, November 11)

With regards to human rights issues raised by the local political parties on which India has voiced its concerns, it ought to be remembered that such unethical incidents were part of several events in the past that India witnessed.

It was India that once sent its troops to Sri Lanka to crush a rebellion there, that ended in the killing of even top leaders of the Indian National Congress.

This has subsequently affected Indian-Sri Lankan relations.

Meanwhile, the Chinese influence in the developmental aspect of Sri Lanka cannot be overlooked.

It proves that lack of a single-party majority in New Delhi is leading to confusing decisions by the federal administration, as they all try to satisfy their coalition partners at the first instant.

Such a move indirectly reduces the distance between the state and federal administrations, subsequently affecting the development of the country as a whole.

It is therefore critical for the federal administration to maintain a good balance between the states so that ultimately India can remain a convincing power in the region.

Ramachandran Nair, Oman

The decision of the Indian prime minister to boycott the summit in Sri Lanka is a welcome one. The main reason was Sri Lankan government’s  ill-treatment of and atrocities towards the Tamil people living there.

Apart from the opposition parties,  Tamil Nadu state government and his own party members are  not willing for Mr Singh to attend  the Commonwealth summit.

The decision by India not to attend may have a big impact on this region.

Name withheld by request

City plan showed Zayed’s priorities

Your story, The man behind Abu Dhabi's master plan (November 12), was an interesting read.

Now 90 years old, Dr Abdulrahman Makhlouf’s experience with Sheikh Zayed, the late visionary and the architect of the UAE, was laudable about how the capital, Abu Dhabi, and other  cities were developed.

Above all, Sheikh Zayed’s determination to plant trees was highly admirable. Al Ain’s is a good example of this and it is why Sheikh Zayed remains in the hearts  of people in the UAE.

K Ragavan, India

National Day rules will curb excesses

Seeing all the outrageous cars on National Day was one of the things I loved most when I lived in the UAE. (Reckless behaviour on National Day will not be tolerated, Abu Dhabi Police warn, November 11).

Seeing the country celebrated on national day was so awesome. On our national day in the US, we sit around and grill hot dogs.

Marina Rose, USA