Dubai: Hundreds of officials and citizens paid tributes to Lt-General Khamis Mattar Al Mazeina, Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police, who was laid to rest in Dubai’s Al Ghusais graveyard on Friday afternoon.
Lt-General Al Mazeina died on Thursday night at Rashid Hospital following a heart attack.
Attending his funeral prayer at Zabeel Grand Mosque was His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, along with Lt-General Shaikh Saif Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior; Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council; and Shaikh Maktoum Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai.
Shaikh Mohammad condoled Lt-General Al Mazeina’s family in a series of tweets on Friday morning. “The UAE has lost one of its loyal sons. Khamis Mattar Al Mazeina was a team leader and soldier who dedicated his life to serve the country. He was a father of good family, May Allah rest his soul in eternal peace.”
“My personal condolences go out to Al Mazeina’s family, friends, Dubai residents and the people of the UAE and to everyone who left a legacy to the country like Al Mazeina. He made his name in the UAE’s record of glories,” he wrote in another tweet.
Shaikh Hamdan tweeted: “May Allah rest Al Mazeina’s soul in eternal peace! I knew him very well, he was very loyal in serving his country and people. He was the man of success of his strong foundation. He did not work only for the country’s present but rather for the country’s glory and future.
We surely belong to Allah and to Him we shall return.”
In a condolence message, Mattar Al Tayer, director-general and chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), said: “The UAE has lost one of its loyal sons who dedicated his entire life to serve and maintain the security of the country. I have known Al Mazeina for 25 years and our relationship was reinforced after the establishment of RTA through holding continuous meetings to discuss topics related to the work of Dubai Police. Al Mazeina was very active, dedicated and loyal. He served his country in complete sincerity to achieve peace and security for all people living in Dubai.”
Even before the body of Al Mazeina was brought to Zabeel Grand Mosque for the funeral prayer, well-wishers had already gathered there in hundreds. Emiratis in their traditional white clothes, almost glowing under the sun, sat in the mosque in silence. A few murmurs could be heard — people reciting the Quran and offering prayers.
As the mosque filled to capacity, it was time for the routine Friday prayer. The funeral prayer followed almost immediately. Most people left as usual out of the main doors but many stayed until the body was carried out through a door near the front. People continued to offer prayers and some took videos and pictures — the last they would see of him.
Outside the mosque, cars left quickly to follow the ambulance carrying his body to Al Ghusais graveyard. Soon, there was a long line of vehicles entering the service lane leading to the cemetery, off Shaikh Mohammad Bin Zayed Road, and Dubai Police were out in full force to direct traffic.
The four-wheelers kicked up sand in the massive graveyard as they went off-road to compete for spots closer to the grave of Al Mazeina, a nondescript burial site.
Again, the crowds swelled to get a closer look, and again people offered funeral prayers. Most well-wishers were Emiratis but there were some expats too. “Lt-General Al Mazeina was a very approachable, open and humorous person. He greatly benefited Dubai Police by establishing various new departments and empowering their heads to be a force for good,” said a Pakistani employee in Dubai Police’s Human Resources Department who was at the funeral.
“He was a true gentleman. I heard about his death through colleagues on Thursday night and I came here today to pay my respects.”
Near the unmarked grave, family received condolences. There was an occasional sob here, a teary eye there. Again, the spirit of decorum hung heavy in the air.
Lt. General Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, Deputy Chairman of Police and General Security, held an emergency meeting Friday evening to discuss administrative and procedural steps following the death of Lt. General Khamis Mattar Al Mazeina, the late Dubai Police chief.
The meeting was held on Friday at 8pm and included the late chief's assistants at Dubai Police.
Major General Khalil Ebrahim Al Mansouri, Assistant to the Dubai Police Chief for Criminal Investigation Affairs, Maj Gen Abdul Rahman Mohammad Rafei, Assistant to the Police Chief for Community Services and Preparations, Major General Mohammad Said Al Zafein, Assistant to the Police Chief for Operations Affairs and Major General Ahmad Mohammad Bin Thani, Assistant to the Dubai Police Chief for Ports Affairs, among others.