x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

FNC member to reach out during Ramadan majlises

Hamad Al Rahoomi says this Ramadan he will dedicate his time as a council member to meeting as many Emiratis as possible, to listen to their problems.

DUBAI // As Emiratis gather in majlises this Ramadan after breaking their fast and finishing their prayers, a Federal National Council member from Dubai plans to join them.

Hamad Al Rahoomi said this Ramadan he will dedicate his time as a council member to meeting as many Emiratis as possible, to listen to their problems.

"I believe in the people's right to see us and speak to us," he said. "And I believe there should be a meeting in person for Emiratis to at least see their representative in the council."

Already, Mr Al Rahoomi is one of the FNC's most active Twitter users, with more than 3,400 followers. Since winning election in September, he has asked six questions - second only to Ali Al Nuaimi, an appointed member from Ajman.

As least two of these - about cancer and about dress codes - were inspired by comments from his Twitter followers.

But Ramadan offers a forum to hear his constituents' views in person. "In Ramadan it is natural that everyone goes to a majlis, and I will be present not as another person, but as an FNC member."

He plans to visit a range of majlises in both city and rural areas. "I am not representing a certain sector of people, but the whole country." he said. "So it is important to meet everyone as each person faces different things.

"Just as once I went to visit Emiratis at their majlis during the election period seeking votes, now I will [go] to represent them."

He also plans to tell Emiratis about the work of the council and its powers.

"People confuse the federal and local government with each other, this is one thing we must tell them," he said. "And with social problems, they need to be general and not just affecting one person."

From October, he plans to run a weekly two-hour "surgery" for Emiratis to visit him. "This is overdue, I wish I was able to do this a long time ago," he said.

Arrangements were being made to dedicate a session to women, he added.

Anyone who wants Mr Al Rahoomi to visit their majlis can contact him through Twitter: @H_Alrahoomi.

osalem@thenational.ae