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'My car stinks because there's a bag of garbage on the back seat'.

Dubai Tenants in posh Emirates Living are raising a stink after being forced to dispose their own trash. Ever since developer Emaar stopped garbage collection over unpaid service fees, tenants here have resorted to extreme measures. This includes carrying garbage in cars and driving around looking for a spot where to dump it.

A Meadows tenant said: "For days, I carried my garbage in my car. On some days, I used to dump it at trash bins near my friend's place, on other days I would use the bins at malls. I never went to the same mall as it might have aroused suspicion. Thankfully, my landlord has cleared his dues and the garbage pick up has been restored. But my car still stinks."

A tenant of a defaulting landlord in The Lakes said he has also been carrying his garbage and dumping it at various places.

Daily chore

"Everyday I go to work carrying my garbage. It has become a daily chore. Unfortunately, my landlord is in jail and has got more pressing issues to worry about than service fee. I don't know what to do?" he said. Emirates Living tenants fear the uncollected garbage could result in a health hazard.

A Swedish tenant in Deema, The Lakes, whose landlord features in Emaar's default list said: "I am worried the garbage might attract rats and other pests. I have been regularly paying rent to my landlord, why do I have to suffer this? My landlord is mired in debts and therefore in no position to clear the service fee dues.

"We are leaving Dubai for good in December, however, till then we have to bear this situation. I don't even know where I can go to dump my garbage. My neighbours have been understanding about it so far."

Defaulting landlords were forewarned that their garbage collection would stop if they failed to pay service fees. In July, Emaar sent a notice setting a deadline for fees to be paid by the third week of the month. According to residents, the garbage collection stopped early this month.

Chairman of the Lakes Owners Association Interim Board, Roberto Kauffmann said in an e-mail: "Fortunately in the Lakes community the vast majority of owners are paying their community service fees. Stopping the rubbish collection from villas, as recently introduced by Emaar Community Managment, can serve as a short-term tool to wake up those owners who are not paying their fee, but eventually communities will need standard debt-collection and legal proceedings. This will avoid impacting the tenants, who may have paid their full dues to the owner, while ensuring that communities can pay for maintenance of pools and landscaping, for utilities and rubbish collection, security, etc."

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Publication:XPRESS (United Arab Emirates)
Geographic Code:7UNIT
Date:Oct 25, 2012
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