Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 23 January 2020

Officials teach public to protect UAE flag ahead of Flag Day

Municipal officials educate Abu Dhabi residents on the values of preserving the flag

Shahama residents hold up UAE flags given to them by Abu Dhabi Municipality officials on Thursday. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Municipality.
Shahama residents hold up UAE flags given to them by Abu Dhabi Municipality officials on Thursday. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Municipality.

Municipal officials visited towns on the outskirts of Abu Dhabi on Thursday to hand out UAE flags and advice on how best to maintain the country’s banner, ahead of Flag Day celebrations.

Abu Dhabi Municipality workers visited Mohamed bin Zayed City, Shakhbout City, Mussaffah, Al Shahama and Mafraq as part of the campaign to teach Emiratis how to care for their flags.

Emiratis and residents are encouraged to hang the country’s banner outside their homes on November 3, known as Flag Day, which celebrates the accession of Sheikh Khalifa as President of the UAE 15 years ago.

On Thursday, the municipality said flags must be kept clean and their colours bright. Flags that tear or become weathered must be replaced.

“The municipality stresses the importance of replacing flags that do not meet the appropriate standards in terms of appearance with new ones,” it said in a statement.

“Protecting the flag of the Emirates in an elegant form is the responsibility of every individual and a shared social responsibility.”

Municipal representatives also visited dozens of warehouses and commercial enterprises in the industrial zones.

In total, workers visited 20 homes in Mohamed bin Zayed City, and held 300 workshops in industrial areas.

They also sent out more than 5,500 text messages calling for the careful handling of the UAE flag to residents across the emirate.

The municipality distributed 250 new flags to people in Al Shahama.

Flag Day is typically marked with a flag-raising ceremony at schools and offices at 11am while the national anthem is heard.

This week, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, the Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, invited the UAE to participate by raising the country's banner.

"Brothers and sisters . The people of the UAE celebrate on November 3 the symbol of their union, unity and sovereignty . We celebrate the UAE flag … I invite all of our institutions, ministries, bodies and schools to lift it at 11am that day," Sheikh Mohammed said.

"Together we raise it as a manifestation of our one destiny and our eternal affiliation to the United Arab Emirates."

The flag holds a special place in Emirati culture and is symbol of the country’s unity.

Made up of red, green, white and black rectangles, the colours represent courage, honesty, love and hope. It was designed by Abdullah Al Maainah in 1971 after he saw an advertisement for a flag designing competition in Al Ittihad newspaper.

Strict laws govern how the flag is to be treated. All flags should be made from nylon and weigh more than 122.4 grams per square kilogram.

Flags are to be inspected every 45 days and changed every six months to avoid them from looking worn.

Flag Day has been celebrated every year since 2013.

Updated: October 31, 2019 06:47 PM