Photo: KT Archives
Photo: KT Archives

Sheikh Hamdan’s charity work changed thousands of lives

Sharjah - Emiratis across the UAE pay tribute to a kind, generous leader.


Afkar Ali Ahmed

Published: Wed 24 Mar 2021, 1:35 PM

Last updated: Wed 24 Mar 2021, 10:38 PM

As a pall of gloom descended on the UAE following the demise of Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Emiratis remembered the generous leader who had uplifted the lives of people in need. Beyond being the UAE's finance minister since 1971 and Dubai's deputy ruler, Sheikh Hamdan was known for his good deeds and charity work.

Putting it in perspective, Salam Al Kutbi, an Emirati journalist, said his kindness and remarkable humanitarian work touched the lives of hundreds and thousands of people. “All these people are in mourning today."

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Mona Al Reysee, a Sharjah government employee, said Sheikh Hamdan’s charitable initiatives embodied the UAE’s culture of giving. “His death is a huge loss to the UAE and the Arab world at large.”

Wednesday was, indeed, a black day for the nation, said Saud Al Shamsi, who works for Sharjah Radio and TV. “Sheikh Hamdan would be remembered forever for his immense love for the country and all its people and residents.”

His humanitarian deeds even went past the Emirates’ borders, Al Shamsi said, noting the leader’s projects that extended all kinds of support to several countries in need.

Aisha Al Ajill, director of culture at the Sharjah Cultural Department, paid her tribute to the noble soul. “His humanitarian work was legendary. He championed the cause of sustainable human development, which was based on dialogue and partnership.”

He was a role model for leaders and strengthened solidarity in the Emirati community, she added.

Emirati author Hessa Al Mazroui would remember the leader for his contributions to the education sector. “I remember when I was still a student, Shekh Hamdan initiated many education excellency awards for teachers and students. He had also done exceptional work in building human capacity and promoting the wellbeing of Emiratis.”

For Abdullah Mohammed, a 56-year-old Emirati who lives in Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Hamdan was a role model whose legacy would live on for the UAE’s people. “He taught us humility and inspired many young Emiratis to love their homeland. He had a unique personality and was able to enter the hearts of not only the citizens of the UAE, but also the residents of this great land. We shall always miss him.”

Sixty-year-old Fatima Al Muhairi had also known Sheikh Hamdan for his humility and commitment to serving the UAE. “He inspired many young people to work hard and serve their nation.”

Yousuf Hamad added: “He was such a great leader who devoted his life to serving his nation. He loved helping people and contributed to their development and wellbeing through providing them with financial support. The people of the UAE shall always miss him.”

Mohammed Al Kabbi, who works at the Dubai Municipality, mourned the loss of one of the towering personalities of the UAE. “He’d always be remembered for his generosity, which benefitted not just the UAE, but the Arab region and the world as a whole.”

Major Rashed Al Ghafri, who heads the General Department of Forensic Sciences and Criminology at Dubai Police, said: “We’ve lost a great character, who spent his life in developing his beloved country.”

Ahmad Al Hashemi, founder of Emirati brand Signature Yashmagh, added: “Sheikh Hamdan was an inspiration. While his death is a huge loss to the UAE, we must remember that his contributions and dedication to the country shall live forever. He will always be remembered.”

Funeral prayers for Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid will be held in mosques across the UAE today, March 24. The absentee prayers will be offered after the Maghrib prayer. The actual funeral prayer over the late Deputy Ruler’s body will be limited to family members due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

(With inputs from Saman Haziq)

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