Abu Dhabi: UAE citizens residing abroad will start voting in the Federal National Council (FNC) elections in 118 polling stations at UAE embassies and consulates around the world on Sunday.

The electoral process has been extended outside the UAE for the second time in a move aimed at allowing Emirati citizens to exercise their voting rights even if they are residing in a foreign country.

The overseas voting, organised by the National Election Committee in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation will continue on Monday.

The voting timings on both days is from 10 am to 6pm local time.

Abdul Rahman bin Mohammed Al Owais, minister of health and prevention, minister of state for National Council Affairs and chairman of the National Election Committee, said: “The keenness of the UAE citizens abroad who are members of electoral bodies to participate in the electoral process based on their loyalty and national affiliation required all preparations to ensure the full readiness of the 118 polling stations designated for overseas voting in diplomatic missions.”

Al Owais confirmed that the NEC decided to exclude the voter abroad from producing the original identity card and instead will be allowed to produce only a copy of the ID card and the passport or any official document containing the image of the voter, in an effort to facilitate the process of voting outside the country on students, patients and travelers abroad who may not hold the identity card with them.

The NEC’s website www.uaenec.ae provides more information and details for members of electoral bodies on the addresses of diplomatic missions abroad, voting centers distributed at UAE embassies and headquarters of UAE diplomatic missions around the world, and other details of interest to voters from voting mechanisms and procedures of the electoral process.

He praised the concerted efforts between the National Elections Commission and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation in order to achieve the readiness of all voting centers scattered around the world and to ensure the transparency, integrity and accuracy of the electoral process and its smooth and regular operation according to the best standards.

The NEC identified cases where the electoral vote becomes invalid, including votes attached to a condition, votes in which more than one candidate is confirmed, votes fixed on the ballot paper and stamped with the seal of the polling station committee, and votes bearing any mark indicating personality.