Abu Dhabi: The final list of candidates contesting the Federal National Council (FNC) elections on October 5 was released on Tuesday.

The list includes 495 candidates — 133 from Abu Dhabi, 114 from Sharjah, 88 from Dubai, 61 from Ras Al Khaimah, 53 from Fujairah, 26 from Ajman and 20 from Umm Al Quwain.

The final list of candidates includes six people of determination. Four candidates — two men from Abu Dhabi and two women from Dubai — withdrew from the contest.

With 180 of the 495 candidates being women, female participation stands at 36.36 per cent.

Abdul Rahman Mohammad Al Owais, Minister of Health and Prevention, Minister of State for FNC Affairs and Chairman of the National Election Committee, praised the high turnout of FNC candidates, saying that it reflects awareness about the FNC’s role and a keenness to actively participate in the UAE’s political development.

Al Owais called on the candidates to follow instructions and guidelines pertaining to campaigns and election programmes, and to set goals that suit the requirements of members of the community.

“The citizens of today are more aware of the role played by FNC members,” he said.

Profile of candidates

The final list includes 312 candidates, or 63 per cent, in the 40-60 age group, followed by 183 candidates, or 37 per cent, in the 21-40 age group.

In terms of academic qualifications, 263 candidates, or 53.13 per cent, hold a university degree and above while 183 candidates (36.96 per cent) have a high-school degree.

The candidates will launch their election campaigns on September 8, which will continue for the next 26 days till October 4.

Campaigning guidelines

Under the guidelines for elections of representatives of emirates to the FNC, sectarianism and intolerance have no place in FN poll campaigns. Candidates have to get their messages across in advertisements and posters without being offensive or disrespectful of social values. The guidelines say candidates have the right to promote themselves freely, but should refrain from incorporating ideas promoting or raising religious, sectarian, ethnic and tribal or bigotry against others.

Similarly, they are not allowed to launch any campaign involving deception or fraud. Tactics of defamation or insulting others are prohibited.

Candidates are not allowed to use public funds, and budgets of public ministries, departments and establishments in their campaigns. Public utilities are also not to be used. The use of SMSes is also not allowed.

Poll campaign rules

Candidates cannot raise campaign funds of more than Dh2 million, which is the spending ceiling.

Candidates should furnish statements of accounts for all donations received.

No candidate is allowed to use offending language or insult others.

Candidates are prohibited from receiving funds or donations from outside the country or from foreign sources.

Candidates are prohibited from posting bulletins, advertisements or any types of illustrations or photos on vehicles.

The use of loudspeakers is only allowed in halls assigned for the purpose of campaigning.

Officials of the government or any official authority are not allowed to back any candidate or run a campaign in favour of any candidate.