Saturday, 07 February 2009
Dubai police said just 11 cars have been left at the airport in the past year not 3,000. (This is surprising because only two days ago, the following quote was in the paper in Dubai: "Every day we find more and more cars," said one senior airport security official, who did not want to be named. "Christmas was the worst - we found more than two dozen on a single day." Apparently the poor man was seeing things.)
Only 11 cars have been abandoned at Dubai airport in over a year, according to the emirate’s chief of police in a stinging attack on the country’s media for misreporting the facts. Clarification on the number of cars left at Dubai International Airport came following repeated media reports that the figure had hit 3,000, as increasing numbers of expatriates fled the emirate as a result of the economic crisis.
Reports of thousands of cars being left at the airport as the global downturn hit Dubai have been circulating in the UAE media for weeks. However, it was an article in The Times of London last week, repeating the 3,000 figure, that prompted lieutenant general Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, chief of the Dubai police department, to speak out.
At an urgent press meeting on Friday, Tamim said the figure was inaccurate and accused journalists of spreading rumours, according to Gulf News who cited Arabic electronic newspaper Elaph.com. "Be assured that if we had at least 50 or 25 or 15 cars abandoned at the airport, I would have told you about it. There have only been 11 cars left at the airport since January 1, 2008, which is before the global economic crisis," Tamim said. Journalists had acted unprofessionally and without objectivity in reporting that Dubai’s economy was collapsing, he added." A reporter should always verify the facts of a report. Did the reporter come back to us or request a comment and we said 'No' to him? Credibility, objectivity and accountability are essential in journalism and this report lacked credibility."
False statements on the market collapsing……are nothing but incorrect rumours. If there is any disruption we will inform the media about it," said Tamim.
Dubai was still witnessing a smooth economy and the problems attributed to the emirate both in the local and international media were “completely false”, Tamim added.“We have to put a limit to this, we are aware of the reports published on this, but now it has gotten out of proportion."