x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Five stand down from Sharjah FNC race

Five candidates from Sharjah have dropped out of the FNC elections, officials say.

Five candidates have withdrawn from the FNC elections in Sharjah, leaving 88 in the running.

All five cited personal reasons, said Mansour bin Nassar, the director of the FNC office in Sharjah.

"It is a candidate's right to withdraw from the campaign for any reason," Mr bin Nassar said. "They can exercise this right until September 21, just three days before elections."

He declined to give the names of those who had withdrawn but said the paperwork had been submitted to the FNC office at the Sharjah Cultural Palace.

There have been no withdrawals so far in Ajman, said Saeed Saif Al Matroushi, the director of FNC Ajman.

Dr Saeed Al Ghafli, the rapporteur of the National Election Committee (NEC), confirmed candidates had departed but declined to discuss the total number remaining nationally or reasons for the withdrawals.

The number of candidates expected to stand had been 468.

"How many have withdrawn is to be announced at a later stage but they are not many," said Dr Al Ghafli, who is also the under secretary of the Ministry of State for FNC Affairs.

The number and names of candidates who had decided to stand down would be revealed on September 21, when the final list of candidates was expected to be released, he said.

The Sharjah FNC office was going ahead with election awareness campaigns throughout the emirate, Mr Nassar said.

"The office has organised three public lectures on election culture so far," he said. "Two of these lectures were organised at Sharjah Cultural Palace, and one was organised in Khor Fakkan."

The emirate has three voting centres, at Expo Centre Sharjah, Sharjah University's branch in Khor Fakkan and a community college centre in Maliha.

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