FNC nominations
File: Registration of candidates for Federal National Council elections in progress in the UAE. Image Credit: Atiq ur Rehman/Gulf News

Abu Dhabi: The aspiring Federal National Council (FNC) poll candidates have embarked on their election campaigns in the country and started wooing voters with a slew of promises for social and economic measures, and combating extremism.

They have started publicising their manifestoes among the people through different social media sites, print and electronic media and promised to raise their issues with the government once elected as a member of the FNC.

According to the National Election Committee (NEC), the total number of candidates for the Federal National Council (FNC) elections includes 495 names — 133 from Abu Dhabi, 88 from Dubai, 114 from Sharjah, 61 from Ras Al Khaimah, 26 from Ajman, 20 from Umm Al Quwain, and 53 from Fujairah.

Emirati candidate from Abu Dhabi Dr Al Taher Musabah Al Kendi, 56, a California University graduate, said: “There are a few burning issues in society which I would like to educate the youth about like combating extremism, terrorism, drug abuse and its addiction, limiting divorce cases among locals and adverse effects of late marriages.”

Fathima Al Muhairi after filing her registration papers for candidacy of FNC election at Dubai World Trade Centre in Dubai. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/ Gulf News

I would like to educate the youth about issues like combating extremism, terrorism, drug abuse and its addiction, limiting divorce cases among Emiratis and adverse effects of late marriages.

- Dr Al Taher Musabah Al Kendi | FNC candidate

He said, “Drug abuse is one of the biggest problems and we need to educate people about its dangers and how does it affect family and social life. I also want to pitch the need to educate pupils about the ills of extremism and terrorism at a young age.”

Divorce by SMS

“I want to urge the government to change or amend existing laws pertaining to divorce. There are people who divorce their wives just by sending an SMS,” he said, adding that marriage contracts must be adequately fortified.

A person should go to court to explain the reasons for divorce and should be guided for reconciliation by the court’s family guidance departments. Strong families build stronger nations, he noted.

Emiratis will begin to elect their next parliamentarians on September 22, while the main election will take place on October 5. The results of the preliminary count will be announced on the same day.

Over 337,738 Emiratis will vote during the polls, marking a 50.58 per cent increase from 224,281 electoral college members in 2015.

Late marriages of Emiratis

Dr Al Kendi believe that the late marriages among locals is not a good sign for the development of the country.

“I don’t mean the marriage age should be reduced. Rather the culture of marriage should be promoted once the youth complete their education and settle down with jobs. By age 25 men and women are mature enough to get married. They can focus on their career and businesses even after marriage.”