x Abu Dhabi, UAE Thursday 20 July 2017

FNC meeting postponed for third time

A scheduled meeting of the Federal National Council was postponed for the third time this month.

Abu Dhabi // A scheduled meeting of the Federal National Council was postponed for the third time this month. Council members were informed on Sunday through a text message from the Speaker's office that the session, which had been scheduled for yesterday, would be deferred to "a later date". No reason was given for the postponement. It is believed the session, first scheduled for February 2, was postponed originally because several members of the council, including the Speaker, were attending a conference of parliamentarians in Uganda.

The second postponement coincided with a Cabinet retreat near Liwa. Ali Jasem, a representative from Umm al Qaiwain and the council's longest-serving member, said the postponement reflected a "misunderstanding of how the council works". He said neither "the council nor the Government has an excuse for not holding the meeting". Though the council sets its own agenda, it must be approved by the Government. Representatives of the relevant ministries usually attend the meetings.

An FNC member who asked not to be named said there was nothing unusual about postponing the meeting. He said the FNC had at times sat for two days if there were many items on the agenda, or if there was something urgent on it. @Email:mhabboush@thenational.ae