Sharjah: Emiratis fulfil their role in decision-making

SHARJAH — Many voters in Sharjah saw the elections as an opportunity to participate in the nation’s decision-making. Voters flocked the Sharjah Expo Centre as early as 8am to exercise their right to vote.

By Ahmed Al Majaida

Published: Sun 25 Sep 2011, 10:21 AM

Last updated: Tue 7 Apr 2015, 10:57 AM

Abdul Rahman Al Owais, Minister of Culture and Youth and member of the National Elections Committee, said the FNC election is a democratic national duty. “The political participation confirms the widespread awareness among the citizens,” he said.

The minister said that the presence of women as voters and candidates, is a clear sign of self-confidence. “In our country it’s not impossible for a woman to be a member of the Federal National Council (FNC), because UAE women have proved to be efficient and qualified to win.”

Ammar Salem, a voter, said he gave his vote for only one candidate as he believed this man is perfect for the position and denied that the selection is based on family decisions.

“Many base their agenda on lies and their reliability is based on their performance. I am confident of the member I chose.”

Mohammed Al Shamsi voted for three candidates. He said: “I received some phone calls from candidates, urging me to vote for them. But I refused to do so as I believe that my voice should be based on pure belief, aimed at building the council by selecting those who truly care and work for their people.”

Sabiha Ahmad bin Khadim voted for two candidates, her brother and her cousin. She said she took that decision based on her confidence in both of them to be competent. “I didn’t vote for my brother and cousin before knowing that both can actually contribute to our country and people. And I hope they raise issues that are related to UAE women and welfare.”

Hessah Mubarak, another voter, said: “Personally I don’t differentiate between male or female candidates. I choose the right person.

“If I believe that a man is more reliable than a woman then I would definitely vote for him. I am not a sexist, but I believe in what must be done, especially when it relates to our country and the citizens.”

Latifah Hassan Ghemail voted for four candidates. She said the procedure was very easy and took a few minutes only. She added, “I hope when candidates become members of the council they won’t change or break their promises because we gave them our trust. I hope we could actually reach higher international standards if we all work together to support our people and country.”

‘Nothing will stop me, even my age’

Ahmed Al Majaida

SHARJAH – Eighty-year old Khalfan Al Shamsi, a retired employee of the Electricity and Water Authority Sharjah, was determined to vote despite his age.

“Nothing will stop me, even my age from coming and participating in the FNC nominations, and the rush confirms the fact that we all want to be part of this political event and in decision-making,” said the elder, who was accompanied by his son.

Al Shamsi took a few steps and and then sat down to catch his breath. But happiness was writ large on his face.

After he cast his vote, he said: “I will take part in this event as long as I am alive. It is an opportunity and a dream come true.” He said he gave his vote to a candidate he knew well and hoped others would do well, too. He thanked the leadership inspired by the visions of the late Shaikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and Shaikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum.

He considered living to witness one of the most important events in his country which enabled people to exercise their electoral right, as a gift from God.

Al Shamsi left the centre surrounded by stares of admiration and appreciation. Many wished him a long life and said he was a boon to the nation.

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