DUBAI / WAM
Women’s rights in the UAE were interwoven into the very foundation of the UAE, Shamma bint SohailFaris AlMazrui, Minister of State for Youth Affairs, at the Global Women’s Forum Dubai on Wednesday.
Speaking at the Forum, Al Mazrui, who recently became the youngest Minister in the UAE Cabinet, said: “As we developed schools, universities and the other facilities of a modern nation, so women were included in all this development thanks to the vision of the late founding father, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan A Nahyan, a vision carried today by His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed, our President.”
“The fact that I am speaking to you today is the greatest proof of how appropriate it is that the UAE should host a conference discussing the empowerment of women, women’s rights and the role of women in the developmental process,” she further said.
Al Mazrui paid tribute to the leaders of the country for their support in empowering women. She said that the Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum says that “we are past the stage of empowering women in the community, we are in the process of empowering communities through women.”
She further said: “Our generation is guided by the leadership of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, who has himself insisted on giving leadership roles in our government to women. That spirit of guidance also rests with H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s, who gives us confidence in our role as we work together to build our nation,” she noted.
Speaking about the series of events that led to her appointment as the youngest Minister in the UAE Cabinet, Al Mazrui said that HH Sheikh Mohammed’s tweets asking UAE universities to nominate a young man or woman to take a post in the country’s cabinet engendered a swelling of pride among the youth. “What I didn’t know was that my university had nominated me,” she said.
“That announcement changed my life in an instant. From a private life to a public life and a huge challenge and responsibility. Nothing, as Sheikh Mohammed reminds us, is impossible in the UAE,” she said.
“I am only now starting to embark on my journey and yes, it is a huge responsibility on these young shoulders,” she said. “But it also shows that every one of our young men and women can afford to have dreams that touch the sky. That our ambition knows no limits. That our country does not only want to reach space but wants to take our dreams and ambitions even beyond that goal,” she added.
The UAE is a country that sets no limit or cap to the dreams of its young generation, she said. “My story is a message to all young men and women in our country that nothing is impossible in life. Nothing is impossible in the United Arab Emirates.”
The Global Women’s Forum Dubai 2016 is taking place at the Madinat Jumeirah from February 23-24, under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai; and led by H.H. Sheikha Manal bint Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, wife of HH Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs, President of the UAE Gender Balance Council and President of Dubai Women Establishment and UAE. The Forum is organized by Dubai Women Establishment in cooperation with the Women’s Forum for the Economy and Society.