Monday, January 25, 2010

Bahraini taxi drivers attempt to fleece tourists

Today's chuckle from the GDN...
Premier orders probe
Posted on » Monday, January 25, 2010

MANAMA: An inquiry was ordered yesterday into the events that followed the docking of luxury cruise liner Brilliance of the Seas at Khalifa bin Salman Port on Saturday.

His Royal Highness Prime Minister Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa ordered the inquiry after taxi drivers allegedly demanded $300 to $400 for taking tourists to Manama. Newspapers also criticised the manner in which officials received the management of Royal Caribbean International, the world's largest cruise company. HRH the Premier said such incidents created a bad impression about Bahrain and ordered the suspension all officials concerned (sic).
Welcome to Bahrain! Of course this type of incident creates a bad impression of Bahrain, however residents of Bahrain will no doubt feel like it is a good thing that the problem has finally caught the attention of the PM... Being naturally skeptical of any ministerial attempt to act, a probe to find someone to blame will probably mean that an expat or two gets fired, as is the way with these things... while the Bahraini taxi drivers will remain indifferent to any attempts to change the way they act. I kind of hope that more incidents like the docking of the luxury cruise liner are made public, and real attempts to reform are initiated... but change needs to start at the top, with those currently immune from reform. If that doesnt happen we will only continue to get window dressing, and half-hearted attempts to solve issues in the country.

As I sit in my office and see and hear VVIP motorcades pass by all hours of the day, most days, with police stopping all other traffic to ensure that the VVIPs are treated with the uppermost respect (not understanding or caring for the contempt it breeds instead), I wish the same VVIPs would also get the chance to sample life in the real world and put up with the same traffic issues everyone else on the island suffers from.

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