10 March, 2011

Next stop UAE?

Following a link from John Chilton's recent post, I pasted the following link one post down. NZM (thanks) thought it would be an interesting piece for discussion.

UAE Citizens petition for direct elections and legislative powers

Generally -- and it's a self-imposed rule -- I never indulge in political discussions outside home turf. On the few occasions that I've gotten involved in politically-influenced discussions here, they've turned nasty. One of the reasons could be the lack of knowledge and etiquette for getting involved in online debates.

Anyway, back to the CNN article and the petition presented to HH Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan by prominent UAE citizens for free elections amongst other requirements that leans or embodies democratization of the UAE.

1) Is that possible?

2) Would the ruling family that's been in power from December 2nd, 1971 relinquish its power and govern from the sidelines?

3) Consider (hypothetically) 2 a done-deal, would the UAE citizens measure up and deliver?

Freedom, free elections, etc amongst other things come at a price. Would the UAE citizens so used to their easy-come-easy-go lifestyle be willing to forego all these for a paycheck based on merits & achievements?


Dave said...

UAE Citizens will not bite the hand that feeds them. When you have such a privileged pampered lifestyle why on earth would you do anything to jeopardise it?

This petition will not make any difference and will never get off the ground because the UAE is different to most other Gulf and Arab nations, and the attitudes and work performance of the locals reflects that.

nzm said...

I think that it's pretty brave of the petitioners to raise their heads above the parapets and request this of the rulers. If the Al Nahyans chose to nip this in the bud at the start, those 133 petitioners could find themselves and their families in awkward situations.

I've been out of the UAE for some time now, so haven't kept up with the political situation as much as I would have, had I still been a resident.

I know that there were elections held a few years back, where "invited" Emiratis could vote. It was supposed to be the beginning of a process towards free elections, I thought.

I guess that this hasn't progressed any further, given that 133 fairly prominent and educated Emiratis have presented this petition?

Faisal Haji said...

I honestly don't think that "if it ain't broke, don't fix it," I was the number one complainer about how our lifestyle would improve if we had this and that in the UAE. But all of this changed when I came here to study, I mean ,for the most part, we live peacefully and happily a joyous life in the UAE. Why tamper with it?

Although we sort have an election for "majlis al etihadi," I honestly think that they are not necessary and suck up the money from the treasury. I've never heard of one achievement that they did, uselessness!

Kyle said...


Maybe it's not about biting the hand that feeds anyone. Maybe, it's a need to taste something different. Hence, the petition.

I don't know how you concluded that this petition wouldn't make any difference. It did make the international press' front page news, didn't it? A little cage rattling, a little more pressure and we'll end up seeing the Ruling Family start making concessions. If that should happen, I'd say that petition did end up making a difference, after all!


Maybe the 133 Emiratis do have an objective in mind and are using the current platform of all that's transpiring in the neighboring region as a leverage to present their case. And in all honesty considering their brave approach, I do hope they get heard.

Kyle said...

Faisal Haji:

Is the 'Majlis Al Etihadi' the FNC? Aren't they selectively appointed by the Rulers? If so, don't you think their role & achievements would be limited because what they're supposed to deliver is not based on their own ideas & thoughts?

Please correct me if I'm wrong.

Faisal Haji said...

@Kyle: I thought that people voted for them, because my father voted for one. I know that their role is limited, but they do you have some civil duties that not one of them fulfilled 1 of their duties. I don't know much about that subject, but I will research it for my knowledge.

Kyle said...


Thanks for all your inputs.

I hope you find the answer(s) you seek.

unJane said...

Why all so secretive, Faisal Haji?

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