ABU DHABI // The capital's police force won the main prize last night at an awards ceremony to recognise excellence in government departments. The police were declared the Excellent Government Department. In 2007, judges did not name a winner in the category because none of the competing departments met the minimum standard for the at the Abu Dhabi Award for Excellence in Government.
Organisers of the award began receiving applications in August last year, and since then, have conducted training sessions and workshops to improve the performance of the 36 participating departments. Abu Dhabi Police picked up four prizes in total, including Excellence in People Development and Excellence in Customer Service. The Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry was named the Excellent Department in Institutional Capacity.
Mohammed Zairi, head of the awards jury, said he was not surprised by the police department's multiple awards. "You cannot be an overall winner if you don't have a lot of strengths," he said. "You have to have mature aspects that qualify you to be the best, and I am not surprised to see such maturity from the Abu Dhabi Police in several areas." Sheikh Hamed bin Zayed, chairman of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince's Court, presented the awards to the winners. Both Emiratis and expatriates were eligible for prizes in the Excellent Employees category, and the winners were given promotions worth Dh150,000.
Rowda al Saadi, the sole female winner last night, received two prizes: Excellence in the Professional Field and the Excellent Employee for the Emirate at large, described by organisers as the "biggest prize". Mrs al Saadi, an infrastructure and services co-ordination manager at Al Ain Municipality, began her career there 10 years ago as an engineer. She said her win "makes her proud, because there is no greater feeling that being honoured by one's country".
Mrs al Saadi was credited for her "revolutionary work ethic, and her exceptional capabilities at promoting a teamwork environment", said Fatima al Moosa, the host of last night's ceremony at the Emirates Palace hotel. Thabet al Abdul Salam, who works for the Environment Agency-Abu Dhabi received the Excellent Employee in the Technical Field award, while Hussein al Harithi of Abu Dhabi Police received the prize for Excellent Employee in the Management Field.
The Environment Agency's Project of Strategic Water Conservation was named Best Managerial Project. The Best Technical Project award went to the Abu Dhabi Water and Electricity Company, for its numbered maintenance system. "I am very impressed with the applicants," Mr Zairi said. "But this is just a start. With excellence, you don't reach a pinnacle, you merely start to raise the standards for excellence."