Dubai: Fatima Al Muhairi, Director of Investment and Corporate Social Responsibility for the Community Development Authority, was one of the earliest women candidates to walk into the World Trade Centre on Day 2 of the registrations to the Federal National Council (FNC) elections.

A mother of two with considerable experience in dealing with social and community issues, Al Muhairi said: “I want to be the voice of the people and represent all the needs and aspirations of the family, society and community issues at the FNC. With considerable exposure to this kind of work at CDA, I have an ear to the ground and understand how to approach people and address these issues.”

Ahmad Ali Al Zaabi, a senior member of the Dubai Protocol team at Dubai Government, also filed his papers at the Trade Centre. He said he would largely translate the vision of the government with the support of the people he represents.

“Everything that concerns my people is my priority — economy, careers, jobs and other issues. I am going to surprise people with creative and constructive solutions to their issues at the same time translate the vision of the higher authorities for them. It is going to be a different kind of change that people can expect,” he said.

Jameela Rashid Al Hamli, working at the Dubai Courts for 20 years, was jubilant about the government’s decision to provide 50 per cent reservation for women in the FNC.

“This is such a great and positive change towards women empowerment. It means men are ready to make way for women and is one aspect of the theme of tolerance that has been adopted by the government. It will make the society more inclusive. If elected I will work towards betterment of many issues for working women such as better retirement benefits; I will focus on family and children and lend my voice to them,” Al Hamli said.

Dr Rashid Bin Sultan Al Kaitoob, a lawyer in a private practice, said he wants to focus on providing more support to youth in the community.

“The young generation is the greatest asset of our country," he said. "I would like to address all the issues related to them in different areas to create opportunities for them and build a generation that are able to demonstrate their talents and participate positively in the progress and growth of the country.”

Dr Suhail Al Bastaki, happiness and marketing director at Union Cooperative, said: “I have always been involved with several CSR initiatives. I would like to take this to the next level if elected to the FNC and be the bridge between the government and the community. I would like to talk about every issue of my community, their fears, aspirations, problems and also positive suggestions so that the voice of every individual is heard.”