ABU DHABI, Dr. Abdul Rahman bin Mohammad bin Nasser Al Owais, Minister of Health and Prevention, Minister of State for Federal National Council Affairs and Chairman of the National Elections Committee, NEC, has said that the UAE is achieving progress and political development for the Emirati community, which believes in the importance of participation and consultation to ensure sustainable development.

In an interview with the Emirates News Agency, WAM, Dr. Al Owais said that the NEC, in cooperation with its strategic partners, is keen to promote awareness among citizens about the country's achievements in the areas of political participation and parliamentary action.

Regarding the decision of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan to raise the participation of women in the Federal National Council, FNC, to 50 percent, Dr. Al Owais said that following the end of the fourth FNC elections, Emirati women will achieve a new regional and international milestone by representing half of the parliament, due to His Highness Sheikh Khalifa's decision and the support of Their Highnesses, Supreme Council Members and Rulers of the Emirates.

He added that the political empowerment programme launched by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa's in 2005 aimed to create the appropriate conditions to prepare Emirati citizens to help strengthen the role of the FNC.

Regarding the NEC's role in improving the awareness of the youth about the election and empowering them to participate in the political process, Dr. Al Owais stressed that the youth represent over 60 percent of voters casting ballots in the FNC election, which reflects their key role in supporting parliamentary work.

He added that every voter has the right to run in the FNC election in their resident emirate, including people of determination, who are supported by the UAE's leadership that provided them with all the necessary tools to perform their role in the community.

As for the e-voting process and its role in advancing the electoral process, he stated that the UAE's e-voting system guarantees transparency and integrity, adding that the country has adopted the best technologies.

Dr. Al Owais highlighted the fact that the FNC is a constitutional institution that plays a major role in the country's development, affirming that the FNC discusses major topics and seeks solutions to them, as well as issuing laws, decisions and recommendations that will benefit the Emirati community.

The minister added that the media is considered a strategic partner in the electoral process, with the responsibility of raising public awareness and reporting on all stages of the election.

Source: Emirates News Agency