Rashid Colony buildings will be demolished soon

DUBAI — The 350 families of the Shaikh Rashid Colony in Ghusais who continue to occupy their apartments despite being served eviction notices last year were finally informed yesterday that the demolition of the buildings 1, 2 and 3 was imminent.

By Joy Sengupta

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Published: Wed 28 Feb 2007, 8:19 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 2:36 AM

However, the exact date for demolition is yet to be announced.

A team of officials of the Dubai Municipality, Development Board and the Municipal Council who met the residents in their office yesterday informed that a final meeting would take place on March 20 — which would decide whether an alternative accommodation would be provided to the affected residents.

Saeed Mohammed Al Ghuindi, the Chairman of the Dubai Rent Committee, who headed the team, told Khaleej Times that they would try their best to provide alternative accommodation to the affected residents.

“However, the buildings will be demolished soon,” he said, adding, “we will also be referring the issue to the Ruler’s Office, Dubai Real Estate Department as well as the Properties Department at the Dubai Development Board to find alternative homes for reasonable rents. The tenants have been called again on March 20 for a final decision in this matter.”

The Dubai Development Board had earlier asked the residents to shift into some apartments developed by Nakheel. But, the residents had rejected the ‘offer’ stating that they could not afford the rents.

Around 500 residents, including families and children that marched up to the Development Board office for the meeting yesterday, expressed disappointment over the board’s decision. They repeatedly requested the officials to either extend the demolition date by three years, or find them alternative accommodation.

Costly flats

Complaining against the Development Board’s attitude, Wahid Mohammed Osmad, a resident and UAE national, said, “We come from low income groups and cannot afford costly flats. Still they were forcing us to move to some new buildings that have been developed by Nakheel. How can we afford it?”

“I have been living in this place since 25 years now. In fact I grew up here. If they want to demolish they should atleast give us an alternative home. Otherwise we would have to return to our home country,” complained Farhana Naimuddin, another resident.

The Board had in August 2006 asked the residents of the three buildings - 1, 2 and 3 to move out before October 31, 2006 explaining that the buildings were very old and in bad shape and therefore needed to be demolished. This triggered a series of protests by residents demanding an extension of one year or even more.

Although no official notice granting extension was communicated to the residents, people continued to live in the hope that the authorities would empathise with their situation.

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