UAE aims for greater political empowerment of Emirati women

session on Strengthening a Culture of Political Participation among Women154-1662961773206
A special session at the FNC highlighted Emirati women’s parliamentary achievements over the past 50 years.
Image Credit: Supplied

Abu Dhabi: The Ministry of State for Federal National Council Affairs (MFNCA) has organised a dialogue session to promote political participation among Emirati women.

Organised in cooperation with the General Secretariat of the Federal National Council (FNC) and the General Women’s Union (GWU), the session was held at the FNC headquarters in Abu Dhabi, and highlighted the Emirati women’s parliamentary achievements over the past 50 years.

Tariq Hilal Lootah, undersecretary of the MFNCA, said that Emirati women are strategic partners in nation-building and are surging ahead in the march towards the UAE’s next 50 years towards development and prosperity.

“Today, women are key figures in decision-making and law-making, and this comes as a result of the work of our wise leadership’s support for them since the formation of the UAE. The UAE believes in the power of its women and has full confidence in their ability to lead and manage high-impact projects on a national and global level,” he said.

Lootah also pointed out that Emirati women have been proactively participating in all fields.

Positions of power

“They are making an outstanding contribution to parliamentary work, winning seats on the FNC and holding positions of power. They are also on the forefront to discuss issues and make key decisions in the service of the nation and its citizens. This trend has been greatly helped by the historic decision to raise the percentage of Emirati women’s representation in the FNC to 50 per cent, in line with the directives of the FNC. The UAE government aims to empower women and encourage them to contribute to all developmental processes, and to shape the future of the UAE,” he added.

He highlighted the importance of the participation of members of the FNC committees, which are the main arms that help in the execution of its constitutional powers, such as discussions about draft laws and overseeing the representatives in monitoring the work of the government.

The members of the Social Affairs, Labour, Population and Human Resources Committee, the FNC’s most important committees, also participated in the dialogue session. These committees are tasked with the study of draft laws, general topics, international agreements and treaties related to various aspects of the citizens’ lives, including social development, human resource development, family, women and childhood affairs, charitable and social institutions, juvenile care, employment, rehabilitation and training and work policies and planning, population policies, and settlement plans. Members accordingly discussed the committees’ legislative and oversight accomplishments achieved during the 17th legislative chapter.

Noura Al Suwaidi, GWU secretary general, said: “Emirati women enjoy their full rights, which the UAE’s wise leadership enshrined in fair legislation and policies that pave the way for many of the UAE’s achievements – particularly in terms of gender balance, where the UAE leads the Arab and the wider region. Emirati women make up 50 per cent of the FNC and 27.5 per cent of the members of the Council of Ministers, where nine of 33 Ministers are women. This is one of the highest rates in the world and reaffirms the fact that the UAE considers women to be an active and influential partner in driving comprehensive and sustainable development in the country, and especially political development.”