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Sultan opens new chapter of consultative council

Ahmed Shaaban / 13 January 2012

SHARJAH - His Highness Dr Shaikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah, on Thursday opened the first ordinary session of the Seventh biennial Legislative Chapter of the Sharjah Consultative Council.

New members of the Sharjah Consultative Council taking oath in the presence of Shaikh Sultan and Shaikh Sultan bin Mohammed.

The meeting was attended by Shaikh Sultan bin Mohammed bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Sharjah and chairman of the Sharjah Executive Council, shaikhs, ministers, senior federal and local officials, and Speaker of the Federal National Council Mohammed Ahmed Al Murr.

After taking oath before the Ruler, the 42 members, including seven women, separately elected both the council’s chairman and deputy chairman, and decided to set up its six permanent committees in the next session on January 19. Former Undersecretary of the Ministry of Education Mohammed Juma Abdul Rahman bin Hindi, who won 22 votes, beat six other competitors — all men — to become the chairman of the council.

Winning 21 votes in the second round, Ali Musabah Al Kitbi beat three other candidates, including a woman, to become the Deputy Chairman.

According to a senior official who did not want to be named, the 35 male and seven female members are all new, with the exception of Khalifa Abu Ghanem, Governor of Abu Musa Island which, along with UAE islands of Greater and Lesser Tunb, is occupied by Iran.

“Of many nominees for the council’s membership, His Highness the Ruler approved only 41, and most of them are from the Central Region — Al Dhaid, Al Madam and Kalba,” he said.

Rashid Al Mahaiyan, being the oldest member, presided the first session in the beginning, and then he gave the floor to the new chairman after the election.

The council started with 35 members in 1999, and then the number was increased to 40 in 2001, including five female members.

“The council was then reshuffled in 2004 with Ahmed Khalfan Al Suwaidi as spokesman, followed by Ali Mohammed Al Mahmud, with two more women members,” the official said.

The over 12-year-old council, officially invited to meet as per the Amiri Decree Law No 2/2012, later was briefed about the laws which were issued after the last council session, particularly the 2012 General Budget of the emirate.

The council, since its inception in 1999, has held 181 sessions, discussed 47 draft laws, and handled 180 complaints in its six normal chapters.

“The council committees held 350 meetings while the council members paid 336 visits to the local departments in the emirate,” the official said, noting that four parliamentary forums were held in the six chapters of the council.


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