Gargash hails womenand#039s participation in FNC elections

ABU DHABI, 27th July, 2015 (WAM) — Dr. Anwar bin Mohammed Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Minister of Federal National Council Affairs and Chairman of the National Election Committee (NEC), has said the participation of Emirati women in the 14th and 15th legislative chapters was very positive, as they constitute 22.2 percent and 17.5 percent of these chapters’ strength with nine and seven members, respectively.
He added that the participation of women in the FNC elections is important, as they form half of the society and are capable of discussing many of the issues related to the women sector and other related sectors of society, noting that the political participation of women would cement the foundations of community in line with the state culture and history.
Dr. Gargash stressed that the participation of women in both previous electoral experiences, have made them politically aware, a move that he said would further boost their participation in 2015 elections. He added that the representation of women in the electoral colleges for 2015 reached almost half – 48 percent. “This is more proof that women are equal and real partners with equal access to seats in the FNC, to contribute to decision making, thanks to the directives of the leadership in this respect.”
The minister made the remarks during a lecture organised by the NEC in conjunction with the General Women Union (GWU), held at its headquarters in Abu Dhabi today.
He underscored that the presence of Emirati women in the FNC “is a paradigm shift in the parliamentary work and a clear message about their effectiveness in the political work in general.”
Dr. Gargash seized the opportunity to salute the UAE martyrs of the Armed Forces, who fell while on national duty. “They made the sacrifice in the defence of national issues.”
He also thanked H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union (GWU), Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF) and President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, for her continuous efforts for women empowerment.
Dr. Gargash underscored that the extensive participation of women would be an assertion of their effective role in the community service, and another opportunity to demonstrate the maturity of the UAE political experience.
For her part, Noura Khalifa Al Suwaidi, Director of the GWU, said the confidence vested by the State in women to shoulder the responsibility on an equal footing with men “is a source of pride for each Emirati woman,” noting that these gains are part and parcel of the women empowerment programme launched by President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, and the follow of Sheikha Fatima, to achieve sustainable development.
She noted that the women participation for the third time in a row “is another achievement, thanks to the legacy of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who had believed in the capacities of women.”
Al Suwaidi also referred to the directives of Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, to set up the UAE Gender Balance Council, with the aim to boost the role of woman as an important partner in the sustainable development process.
She concluded that the UAE leadership is keen to accord more opportunities to women so that they can play their national, political and social roles fully, citing the successive successes attained by the UAE national women.