Dubai: Municipal services in the UAE have made progress not only in terms of the range of services provided by them but also the quality of services and technology used to cater to the growth of the nation.
From a single room and only three employees in 1940s, to becoming a key driver in the growth of the global city that Dubai is today, the Dubai Municipality is among the largest establishments that employs more than 11,000 people working across 35 departments and 28 buildings.
Created nearly a decade before the birth of the country, Abu Dhabi's municipal department too has undergone many changes over the years.
"The rapid development witnessed by Abu Dhabi city is a testament to its ambitions of becoming a reputed metropolis. Under the continuous patronage of our wise leadership, the Municipality of Abu Dhabi City has been an agent for many key projects geared towards achieving the Abu Dhabi Vision 2030," said Abdullah Al Shamsi, acting executive director of municipal infrastructure and assets at the municipality.
In 1957, a small force of 80 police officers was formed to guard the royal locations, markets, banks and the port in Abu Dhabi. That was the beginnings of the Ministry of the Interior which was tasked to provide stability of the state and for security and stability of the people and property.
Respect for human rights is one of the core values of the Abu Dhabi Police, says a senior officer. While their quest is for a safe society free of crime, the police also have an important part to play in the society beyond the traditional policing, he notes.
"The police participate in matters of social and economic welfare, support equality and promote cultural understanding and unity," says Lieutenant General Shaikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior.
Policing strategies have evolved over the years and the police have become proactive with Dubai Police Chief, Lieutenant General Dahi Khalfan Tamim, among other officials active on the social media site Twitter.
The police chief replies to queries and suggestions from the public and this open-door policy has made Dubai Police one of the most efficient and trusted security agencies in the region.
Dubai Police was the first Arab police force to apply DNA testing in criminal investigations and the first to use electronic fingerprinting.
Another first was the adoption of the community policing programme as well as the establishment of a Human Rights Department. ‘Your Police Officer Neighbour' is a recent programme with the aim of enhancing security by placing a friendly and approachable police officer in each neighbourhood.
Dubai Police has won many prizes in recognition of departmental achievements and initiatives, both locally and internationally.
The Traffic section runs regular awareness campaigns to reduce accidents and reduce road deaths. Its efforts have helped reduce deaths to nearly four in 100,000. This is on par with the leading cities in this regard.
Dubai Police's other achievements have been in solving some of the high-profile crimes committed in the emirate, such as the day-light robbery of Graf jewellery shop in Wafi Mall and the murders of Chechen leader Sulim Yamadayev and Lebanese singer Suzanne Tamim.