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Committed to founder’s vision
December 02, 2017
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ABU DHABI: On the occasion of the UAE’s 46th National Day, marked on Dec.2, President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has said that the leadership will stay the course laid down by the nation’s founding fathers and continue to deepen the Spirit of the Union, which was motivated by the aspirations of the people.

In a statement to Nation Shield, the Armed Forces monthly journal, Sheikh Khalifa also spoke about the approaching ‘’Year of Zayed’’ in 2018, which will mark 100 years since the birth of the founding father, and urged citizens to make the year one for “loyalty and belonging, as well as for the enhancement of creative and innovative practices that enable our state to become a pivotal actor regionally and globally.”

Below is the speech in full:

“Dear Emirati sons and daughters, may the peace, mercy and blessings of Allah be with you.

On this glorious day, on which we celebrate the 46th anniversary of the establishment of our state, we pray to Allah Almighty to have mercy on the founding father, the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and on his brothers, the co-founders of the Union. While we give a standing ovation in their memory, we take them as inspiration, our inspire the role models, and derive our ideals from their insightful lifetimes and biographies. We ask Allah Almighty to grant them mercy and forgiveness.

HAILING RULERS

Dear Emirati people, we offer our profound gratitude to you for your sincere loyalty and honest and diligent work. On your behalf, we also extend warm congratulations to my brothers: His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, and Their Highnesses the Supreme Council Members and Rulers of the Emirates, who are sharing their far-sighted vision in guiding a nation that is great with its people, proud of its values and principles, strong with its giving and its achievements.

Our federal experiment, which will celebrate its golden jubilee in a few years, boasts of examples of courage, heroism and achievement.
 
Armed with unflinching perseverance, our fathers laid down a solid foundation that delivered remarkable, honourable achievements and a giant productive infrastructure and achieved paradigm changes in all walks of life, making significant transformations that changed the course of history and enabled the country to depart - once and for all - from the eras of division and misery. They paved the way for a successful federal experiment that promoted the concepts of national participation and pride. We will stay the course laid down by our founding fathers and continue to deepen the Spirit of the Union, whose announcement was motivated by the aspirations of our people for a system that unifies and mobilises efforts and unleashes energies through federal institutions that play their role in an integral method with local governments and in complete coordination with all other sectors. This unique federal experiment has become an inspiring role model for many countries.

YEAR OF ZAYED

Dear children, as the nation is preparing to celebrate the ‘Year of Zayed’ in 2018 to mark 100 years since the birth of the founding father, we invite all government entities and community forces to launch initiatives that deepen the noble values that Sheikh Zayed instilled in us so as to further encourage our people to build and to give and to enhance their resilience to confront challenges. Nations prosper by respecting and appreciating themselves, immortalising their national figures and by committing to values of solidarity and participation. We also urge you to make the Year of Zayed a year for loyalty and belonging as well as for the enhancement of creative and innovative practices which enable our state to become a pivotal actor regionally and globally.

In this respect, we express our appreciation for the enthusiastic response to the ‘’Year of Giving’’ which was developed by the government and private sector into a national strategy, whose objectives were to promote humanitarian work practices in the country and deepen the traits of generosity and cohesion, which have set our people apart from others over centuries.

Dear citizens, 2017 was an eventful year for national work, development and achievements, which have propelled our country to the top rankings in international economic, competiveness and developmental indices. This hard-won progress is proof of the diligent efforts made by the federal government and local governments to create an innovative working environment as well as a friendly climate for the business sector so as to contribute to the government policy to diversify the economic base.

INCOME DIVERSIFICATION

The path towards a better future begins with the diversification of the sources of national income. When we launch projects for renewable energy, space technology and oil derivatives industries; when we create opportunities for small scale enterprises and for tourism, financial and logistic services; and when we invest in human resources, we actually mean diversification.

Investment in human being has always been the essence of the vision for the development of our state since its establishment. Consequently, our focus is mainly directed towards fostering and supporting excellence and innovation and developing the capacities and skills of Emirati human resources. A development that is not human-oriented is doomed to failure. As a successful state, we believe that the prime job of the government is to make people happy; its mandate is to make the homeland a good place in which to live; its goal is to create an environment that revives hopes, to adopt policies that foster dreams, to launch projects that realise great expectations, to engage in actions that make citizens feel safe and enjoy care, employment, education and housing.
 
In this respect, we appreciate the persistent efforts being made by the Follow-Up Committee of the Initiatives of the UAE President to deliver its objectives and its close cooperation with federal and local competent authorities to produce tangible results in developing infrastructure projects for services, housing and improving living standards across the emirates. We also applaud the efforts being made by the federal government, the Federal National Council and local governments to spread the culture of participation, to integrate the citizens into the labour market, to build the capacities of the vulnerable and people of determination, to harness energies of youth and to empower women, who are today efficiently participating in different areas of national action and holding the highest political and legislative posts.Dear Emirati sons and daughters, economic growth - despite its importance and priority - is not an end in itself; it is rather a means to make life more balanced and moderate. A development that does not integrate the cultural dimension is not sustainable. WAM

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