Dubai voters make a beeline to voting centres

Proud voters from across the country were out in large numbers on Saturday morning as the Federal National Council (FNC) elections got underway. The first voters started trickling in well before the start of the polling as candidates were first to vote.

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Published: Sat 24 Sep 2011, 8:31 PM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 10:56 AM

People from all walks of life, including men and women, started coming in large numbers as the day progressed with several thousand people completing the voting by the afternoon itself.

Khalid Al Marri was among the first voters waiting outside the polling centre in Dubai World Trade Centre.

‘I am proud to be a part of the nation-building process and I had been waiting since a very long time for this day to come. This was the only thing missing in an Emirati’s life,’ said Khalid.

He was clear with his choice of candidates as he carried a slip with the number of his choice of candidates.

‘The success of the next elections will depend on the people we select to carry out the national duty. That’s why I spent a lot of time in deciding whom to vote for,’ said Khalid.

With more than 100,000 people selected to vote, the FNC elections are the largest in the history of the country. Eager to make their voices heard, a large number of young voters were seen crowding near the centres.

Hamed Saif Belmahaina had come along with his father to vote for his choice of candidates. He expressed that the elections made people feel ‘a part of the political process.’

‘This is a lot of excitement and we are very happy to vote. Seeing so many Emiratis together makes me feel united as we achieve a national goal with our right to vote,’ said Hamed.

Fahad Abdul Rahim, another voter who had come early to participate in the voting was visibly happy with the experience. ‘It was very well organised and there was no confusion. It hardly took five minutes as we selected our candidates with ease,’ said Fahad.

A first time voter, Fahad praised the visionary leadership of the UAE in making more people a part of the Electoral College. ‘This is a great initiative and the whole purpose is to provide a voice to the Emirati people and build a bridge between the people and the government,’ added Fahad.

Voters were briefed shortly before entering the polling centre. Volunteers guided the voters to the voting machines as the candidates’ names appeared alongside their photographs on the machine.

His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai visited the polling centre in Dubai World Trade Centre where he met with candidates and voters.

muaz@khaleejtimes.com



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