Future of our children is brighter than ours: UAE residents on Sheikh Mohamed address

Cross-section of people share thoughts on President's message


Nasreen Abdulla

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Published: Thu 14 Jul 2022, 8:14 PM

In his historic address to the nation, UAE President His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, paid respects to the people of the country saying, "We have been lucky to have our people, who have proved their strength, strong will, determination and ability to overcome any and all challenges." The leader also stressed that the happiness and prosperity of UAE citizens will be at the core of all his plans.

Khaleej Times spoke to a cross-section of people about what they thought of his message.

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For Emirati Hanan Al Zarooni, the address was a reminder that the future of the UAE is still bright. “His Highness has a vision for both Emiratis and expats,” she said. “And when I heard him outline his plans, I understood that we are in safe hands and the future of our children is brighter than our future.”

“When he spoke everything about what His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan had done, it was a very emotional moment for me. Even in our darkest moment, when we had just lost our leader, we did not even for a moment have to worry about our country’s future. We are extremely blessed to have such leaders who ensure the safety and stability of our country. All around us, countries are facing issues because of the pandemic, rising prices of oil, political unrest, intolerance and so many other factors. However, in the UAE, the market has stabilized, investor confidence is extremely high, and the future is looking very promising.”

Hanan also added that watching the address on TV was a special moment. “When Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed spoke, each one of us knew that the message was for us. Irrespective of whether we are Emiratis or expats, irrespective of background or culture, he has big plans for all of us. I am so excited and can’t wait to see what we will achieve. I know that good days are coming.”

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Emirati Noora Toobji feels Sheikh Mohamed is a leader of the masses. “We are so lucky and proud to have him as a leader,” she said. “He is a personality that everyone talks about. In terms of education, safety and medical facilities, our rulers have done so much for us. We appreciate this and we show our appreciation through our determination and the hard work that we put in our jobs and careers. He has even taught us to be careful with our words. In a previous speech Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed had cautioned us to think twice before you do anything because people will not call you by your name, they will say you are an Emirati. That is something that has stuck in my mind. So, every time I go out, I know I am representing my country.”

“I was also very happy to hear him talk about the expat population in the country. There are residents who are born here, live here and love this country as much as we do. They have poured their passion into the UAE, and we appreciate it. We open our doors and hearts to them for helping this country grow.”

“As for Sheikh Mohamed as a ruler, I expect nothing less than the best from him. I know he will continue to do whatever his father has done and more. I pray to Allah to give him the strength, patience and tolerance to lead this country to greater glory.”

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Mohammed Azhar Ali is an Abu Dhabi resident who hails from India and has been living as an expat in the UAE for 12 years. “The address by the His Highness was very inspirational and emotional,” he said. “For one, the fact that it was one of the first time ever that a leader in the UAE has addressed the nation like this made it extremely special.”

“Among the things that he mentioned, what really touched me was how he addressed not just the citizens but also the expat residents. For many of us who call this home, it felt very personal to know that our contributions are seen and valued.”

“I think Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed is a truly exceptional leader who has great wisdom and a vision that will take UAE to greater heights. I consider myself blessed to live in a country with such an able leader.”

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Josh De Vera, a Filipino expat who was born and raised in the UAE, said the acceptance and tolerance he has experienced in the country is second to none in the world. “As someone who was born and raised in Dubai, I was fortunate enough to see how the rulers in this country have looked after and cared for its expats as well as its citizens,” he said, “Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed is a ruler who leads from the front and he has really embraced the people of UAE who have come from multi-cultural backgrounds. His attitude is reflected in the policies of this country and that is one of the reasons why I am proud to call the UAE my home. I believe he will continue to have bigger plans for all of us.”

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Julnar Hilly is a college student hailing from Iraq and for her, UAE is always home. “I have lived in several countries all over the world including the UK and Korea,” she said. “However, when I think of home, that is always the UAE. I am proud to call this country my home and I think one of the reasons for that is the kind of atmosphere the rulers of this country have cultivated. Everyone is accepted with no prejudices or biases.”

“I watched the His Highness address the nation live on TV and it filled my heart my happiness. With everything that is going on in the world, the UAE is such a beacon of hope. It is an example of peace and prosperity that the rest of the world can follow. And I know that with Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed at the helm, no matter what difficulties may lay ahead of us, we will overcome it.”


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