ABU DHABI: The National Election Committee held its second meeting, chaired by Dr Abdul Rahman Bin Mohammad Bin Nasser Al Owais, Minister of State for Federal National Council (FNC) Affairs, to discuss preparations for the upcoming Federal National Council (FNC) elections.

The Committee began by approving the minutes of its first meeting, before reviewing a study on developing smart systems for the elections, prepared by the Smart Systems Sub-Committee of the National Election Committee, and discussing methods to develop electoral processes to keep up with developments, in line with the directives of the UAE’s wise leadership to embrace advanced technologies and enable access to smart services. Attendees reviewed the executive regulations for FNC elections, as well as media perceptions and ways to enhance visual identity to ensure effective communication with the community.

“The UAE is gearing up for a new phase of achievements to be added to the success of the previous three electoral cycles,” said Al Owais. “This embodies the objectives of the Political Empowerment Programme, launched by UAE President His Highness Shaikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, where the values of ‘Shura’ and political participation are firmly established as a means to empower the people of the UAE to play an effective role in the national development process.”

“The previous elections reflected the increased political awareness of UAE citizens, which was clearly manifested in their commitment to political participation as a means to cement their national identity and protect their country’s achievements, in line with the UAE leadership’s vision to enhance competitiveness and excellence across all sectors, and creating a better future for generations to come,” he added.

The Minister of State for FNC Affairs said: “We are dedicated to consistently meeting the UAE’s aspirations and drive towards innovation, and providing quality, high-tech services that help develop electoral processes, increase public awareness, and ensure wider participation. In our meeting, we reviewed a study to develop smart systems that adhere to international best practice and ensure electoral transparency and efficiency.”

Al Owais underlined the importance of implementing the executive regulations in order to allow the National Election Committee to carry out its mandate, enhancing its performance and effectiveness in the next stage. The committee also approved the formation of the Committees for the Federal National Council Elections 2019 in the various emirates, to serve as important executive bodies under the umbrella of the National Election Committee, and manage technical and administrative aspects of the FNC elections.

He thanked the Diwans of the Rulers of the emirates for their continuous support and cooperation in forming the committees for the 2019 elections, noting that these bodies support the committee in its role to manage the elections. “Forming the committees is an important milestone considering their pivotal role in managing the election process in the various emirates,” Al Owais said. “Together with the other subcommittees of the National Election Committee, these committees will make all necessary preparations and arrangements to carry out the FNC elections 2019.”