Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 23 May 2019

Call for Emirati women to embrace Year of Zayed and highlight Founding Father's legacy

UAE’s General Women’s Union said women should show their appreciation for a 'rare man'.

The opening of a monument honouring UAE Founding Father Sheikh Zayed is set to take place on Monday night at 9.30pm. Chris Whiteoak / The National
The opening of a monument honouring UAE Founding Father Sheikh Zayed is set to take place on Monday night at 9.30pm. Chris Whiteoak / The National

While the country lays down its plans for the Year of Zayed, the UAE’s General Women’s Union called on Emirati women to show their appreciation for the late president.

Director general Noura Al Suwaidi said it was important that women took the opportunity to appreciate and highlight the work a “rare man” did for them.

President Sheikh Khalifa declared 2018 the "Year of Zayed", as the year marks 100 years since the birth of the late Founding Father, Sheikh Zayed. The announcement was made to coincide with the anniversary of Sheikh Zayed's Accession Day - August 6, 1966.

The Year of Zayed aims to achieve objectives such as highlighting the role he played in establishing the UAE and consolidating its foundations of modern development, with an emphasis on the nation's achievements, state news agency Wam reported. It is also seen as an opportunity to portray Sheikh Zayed’s legacy in forthcoming projects and initiatives that express his vision and values.


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“The Year of Zayed is a great national occasion when we will proudly share memories of the life of the Founding Father, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and his gift to us of deeply-rooted values, principles and traditions that have become part of our Emirati identity,” said the President.

He called for making 2018 a year of achievements, initiatives, events and programmes that reflect the personality of Sheikh Zayed, highlighting his pioneering role, his vision and his sound leadership.

Sheikh Zayed ordered the establishment of a women’s union in 1975. Ms Al Suwaidi said that the achievements made by Emirati women are due to Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Woman’s Union, and Sheikh Zayed, who led the region by presenting opportunities for women to develop their roles in society.

She asked that women intensify their efforts to show their appreciation “to a rare man who dedicated his life to making his people happy and support women.”

“Everything the UAE and Emirati women have achieved so far is because of solid foundations laid down by Sheikh Zayed,” she said.

“We call on Emirati women to be the first to respond to the calls of the leadership for more activities and events in honour of Sheikh Zayed’s legacy.”

Plans for activities and initiatives to be held during the Year of Zayed are yet to be announced.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, said on his Twitter account: “We look forward to making the Year of Zayed exceptional with new projects and initiatives inspired by his legacy.”

The Minister of State, Noura Al Kaabi, said the year was “a fitting tribute to the long journey of progress led by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Founding Father of the UAE. It is a message of pride to every Emirati citizen – pride in the prominent position that the UAE has come to occupy, a journey that began at our country’s very inception”.

Dr Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of State and Chairman of the Board of Director of the National Media Council, said that the Year of Zayed aims to preserve the legacy of the Founding Father. “The Year of Zayed is an opportunity to learn from the journey of wisdom and giving of the founder of the nation, to teach our sons and daughters about his journey and enable them to benefit and continue reaping the rewards,” he said.

“The values that the late Sheikh Zayed was keen to promote are derived from the tolerance of the Islamic religion, which encourages people to assist humanity."

Updated: August 6, 2017 08:08 PM