Tuesday, March 9, 2010

'Defacing Dubai not on'

The Gulf Today, 3 Feb 2010

Penal actions, including a fine of Dhs200 will be slapped on those putting up posters on walls or at any other public spot in the Emirate of Dubai, starting from Tuesday.
The Dubai Municipality's (DM) move against the offending residents comes in the wake of increase in the trend of stickers, flyers and posters in public places, which adversely affects cleanliness and mars the city's beauty of the city.
A senior official at the Municipality told The Gulf Today that the practice will not at all be tolerated in the Emirate, as some people play over-smart to escape the expenditure of releasing advertisements in newspapers or other media.
Titled "Sticker Removal" campaign, the DM launched a new environmental initiative on Tuesday to clean up the ugly walls in various locations of the emirate.
Starting from Karama Park, 300 volunteers from private sector companies, 50 municipal labourers and DM officials took to the streets of Karama and Satwa districts on Tuesday morning and torn down posters and flyers, as part of the week-long campaign.
Suhail Mohammed Sayyid Al Awadhi, Head of Operations and Cleaning Services Section at the DM, said that Karama has been chosen to launch the campaign, as it has become the Emirate's worst affected residential region with illegal and ugly posters in public places.
"The civic body aims at changing the residents' attitude of fixing posters outdoors in order to enjoy the benefits of unpaid adverts. All the residents are urged to stop the practice that spoils the attraction as well as cleanliness of the city," he added.
"The advertisers, who stick posters in open places, will be approached by civic inspectors disguised as customers, through the provided telephone numbers on the adverts. Four teams of the undercover inspectors have been deployed in different locations to trap the offenders and issue fines on the spot," explained Al Awadhi.
Hussain Nasser Lootah, Director General of Dubai Municipality, said the poster problem was particularly acute in Dubai, which has been barraged with thousands of posters, flyers and notices affixed on building walls, bus shelters, lamp posts or any available surface.
"The Karama, Satwa, Deira and Al Qusais areas in the Emirate have been identified as having the highest density of illegal posters and stickers," he added.
Al Awadhi said at least 15 to 20 people are being caught daily by the DM inspectors for posting stickers in open places. "Governmental organisations such as Etisalat, DEWA and RTA have also joined forces with the DM initiative, as their premises in various places are being used by illegal advertisers," he said.
"The removed sticker waste will be recycled by Emarat Union Company that has provided 40 baskets to collect the debris," said Al Awadhi.
"The next phase of the campaign will take part in May in Al Ras district spanning across Al Naser Square and Sabka areas in Deira," he added.

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