Preparations for FNC elections 2011 in full swing

ABU DHABI - The Election Management Committee of the National Election Committee (NEC) has announced that preparations for the Federal National Council elections set for 24th of September 2011 are proceeding to plan and in accordance with the vision of the UAE leadership as well as the achievements of the nation.

By (WAM)

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Published: Tue 21 Jun 2011, 9:29 PM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 7:40 AM

Addressing a press conference in Abu Dhabi today, Tariq Hilal Lootah, Undersecretary of the Ministry of State for Federal National Council Affairs and a member of NEC, said that the election Management Committee has developed a detailed operations plan for the electoral process and that the plan has made significant progress well ahead of the Election Day.

The press conference was also attended by Saeed Al Ghafli, Assistant Undersecretary for Federal National Council and NEC’s Rapporteur, Sami Bin Adi, Assistant Undersecretary for Support Services at the Ministry of State for Federal National Council Affairs and member of the Election Management Committee, Dr Ali Al Khoury, Director General of Emirates Identity Authority and member of the National Election Committee and the members of the various committees constituted by NEC.

“The minimum strength of the Electoral College is set at 300 times the number of FNC seats and there is no upper limit. Indications are that the total number of Electoral College members will reach 80,000, which places a huge responsibility on the Election Management Committee,” Lootah said.

“The Election Management Committee has an integrated action plan which takes into account the larger representation expected in the Electoral College. Polling centres will be opened in various locations based on the number of Electoral College members and accessibility, and there will be more than one polling station in some emirates, to make it convenient for voters,” Lootah continued.

The National Election Committee has also launched a call centre and website on the FNC Elections 2011 as part of increasing public awareness and facilitating procedures associated with the elections. The initiative is in line with the educational plan designed to educate Electoral College members on all aspects of the election process.

Enquiries on the electoral process and procedures can be had by dialling 600566661 or through the website www.uae.nec.ae.

“The Contact Centre aims to provide Electoral College members and the public with all the necessary information concerning voting and nomination as well as to answer all election related questions. The website will also facilitate members’ access to important information.”

“We have tried to build a comprehensive website that includes information related to the election process, schedule of elections and information on the NEC, FNC as well as the various committees, subcommittees and executive instructions,” Lootah added.

“We were keen to ensure that the website has a Q&A section that addresses all possible queries from the voter and the candidate as well as the public, so that the information provided is complete and accurate,” said Lootah.

“As soon as the members of the electoral bodies in each emirate are announced on the 11th of July 2011 they will be published on the website so that any citizen can verify whether his or her name is included in the Electoral College in his respective emirate. Information on polling stations and the emirates’ committees will also be available on the website as and when they are approved,” he concluded.

“The National Election Committee has adopted a comprehensive educational plan to communicate effectively with citizens across all segments and organised several lectures targeting universities and public sector leaders. NEC will continue to hold seminars for different sectors in the next couple of weeks. NEC also conducted awareness sessions for the heads of the Election Management Committee and members to educate them about all aspects, rules and regulation of the election process,” explained Lootah.

“The NEC will soon launch an sms programme which will include updates on the elections, information regarding the UAE President’s programme for political participation, importance of political information, election timetable and others. An educational campaign for Electoral College members and the public through various print, audio and visual media will also be launched to raise awareness on all aspects of the election and its procedures,” said Lootah.

Saeed Al Ghafli Mentioned the general rules of the election process: “The elections will happen by direct secret ballot. Voting will begin at 8 a.m. and continue till 7 p.m. In case all the voters in the hall are not able to vote by 7 p.m., the polling period may be extended.”

“An electronic voting process will be adopted to avoid discrepancies. The election centers will also be ready to deal with voters with special needs,” he added.

“The Election Management Committee is aware of the importance of having qualified human resources for the successful conduct of the elections. The Election Management Committee will assign qualified manpower to look after the technical work associated with electronic voting system, and ensure the efficiency of the polling stations. The personnel on ground will be divided to technical teams and volunteers,” said His Excellency Sami Bin Adi.

“The Election Management Committee has enlisted about 300 volunteers in its database to assist in the administration and operational work during the Election Day. The Committee is about to sign a partnership agreement with Takatof to manage and distribute volunteers across election centers in various emirates. The Committee has also held four meetings with volunteers to brief them on their roles during the elections.

“E-voting is considered to be one of the most efficient in ensuring a safe, effective and convenient election process. The electronic voting system has been adopted in many countries across the world and the UAE was the first Arab country in the region to implement such an advanced system in 2006. The UAE adopts best international practices in using e-voting systems and leading e-voting solutions provider Logica Business and Technology has been chosen for the FNC Elections 2011,” concluded Bin Adi.


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