Federal National Council

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Federal National Council
المجلس الوطني الاتحادي
Coat of arms or logo
Type
Type
Leadership
Amal Al Qubaisi
since 18 November 2015
Deputy Speaker
Marwan Ahmed Ali Bin Ghalita
since 18 November 2015
Structure
Seats40
UAE Federal National Council apportionment diagram.svg
Political groups
     Independent (40)
Length of term
4 years
Website
official website
Emblem of the United Arab Emirates.svg
This article is part of a series on the
politics and government of
the United Arab Emirates
Flag of the United Arab Emirates.svg United Arab Emirates portal

The Federal National Council (FNC) (Arabic: المجلس الوطني الإتحادي‎, al-Majlis al-Watani al-Ittihadi) is the federal authority of the United Arab Emirates formed to represent the general Emirati people.[1] The FNC consist of 40 members with advisory tasks in the house of legislative council. Twenty members are elected by the citizens of the UAE through an electoral college, while the remaining twenty are appointed by the rulers of each emirate.[2][3] The FNC assembly hall is located in the Abu Dhabi, the capital of UAE.[4]

The National Election Committee (NEC) conducts the election and is authorized to nominate the electoral college members. Any citizen can be selected as a member. The NEC was established in February 2011 by a consensus of the UAE Supreme Council and chaired by the Minister of State for Federal National Council Affairs. The NEC have the authority to look after the election of representatives from all the emirates of the UAE to the Federal National Council (FNC).[3]

History[edit]

The Federal National Council (FNC) was formed under the Provisional Constitution of the United Arab Emirates in 1971 as a permanent component of the country's governing structure, which also includes the Supreme Council, President, Cabinet and Judiciary. Before 2006, all members of the FNC were picked by the Rulers of the emirates.

Over the last 43 years, the FNC has discussed hundreds of issues and drafted laws concerning the people and economy of the country. According to the Constitution, federal draft laws first have to pass through the FNC for review and recommendations. Draft laws and amendments formed with help of specialized house committees are presented to the Council for discussion and later sent back to the Cabinet for consideration and approval. Throughout its history, the Council has influenced the Federal Government to draft laws. Original draft laws from the Cabinet are amended by the Council to suit the needs of the citizens which they represent.[5]

The FNC is responsible under the Constitution for examining, and, if it wishes, amending, all proposed federal legislation, and is empowered to summon and to question any Federal Minister regarding Ministry performance. One of the main duties of the FNC is to discuss the annual budget. Specialized sub-committees and a Research and Studies Unit have been formed to assist FNC members to cope with the increasing demands of modern government.[6]

Composition[edit]

The composition of the Federal National Council was as follows. Half were elected and half were appointed:[7]

Emirate Number of members
Abu Dhabi 8
Dubai 8
Sharjah 6
Ras Al Khaimah 6
Ajman 4
Fujairah 4
Umm Al Quwain 4
Total 40

Speakers of the Federal National Council[edit]

Name Entered Office Left Office Notes
Thani Abdullah Humaid 1972 1976 [8][9]
Taryam bin Omran Taryam 1977 1981 [8][9]
Hilal bin Ahmed bin Lootah 1981 1991 [8][9]
Al Haj bin Abdullah Al Muhairbi 1993 1996 [8][9]
Mohammed Khalifa Habtour 1997 2003 [8][9]
Saeed Mohammad Al Gandi 2003 2005 [8][9]
Abdul Aziz Al Ghurair February 2007 15 November 2011 [10][9]
Mohammad Al-Murr 15 November 2011 18 November 2015 [11][9]
Amal Al Qubaisi 18 November 2015 Incumbent [7][9]

Elections[edit]

2006 Elections[edit]

Not all UAE nationals were allowed to vote or run for office. 6,689 out of some 800,000 Emirati citizens in the country were eligible to take part in 2006 election. Those eligible were chosen by the rulers of the emirates.

Women were allowed to vote and run for office but there was no quota to ensure a set number of women were elected as there was in some other Arab countries. Over 14% of candidates were women. By the end of 2003, all forty members of the FNC were male.

Election officials billed the polls as a trial run they hoped will pave the way for universal suffrage in the coming years. Even then, however, only half of the FNC will be elected.[6]

In late 2006, half of the organization was elected.[12] These elections were seen as the first steps toward a Emirati democracy.[13]

2011 Elections[edit]

In 2011, parliamentary elections had an electoral college of 129,274 members, nearly 20 times more than in 2006. The new electoral college includes about 12% of UAE nationals. Approximately 35% of the members were under 30 years of age and 46% were women.

In all, 468 candidates, including 85 women, stood for the elections. Many candidates pledged to provide better education and health care and more housing for young UAE nationals. They also promised to strengthen the UAE identity and culture. Several candidates used social media networks such as Facebook to present their plans.[14]

2015 Elections[edit]

The electoral college increased from 129,274 in 2011 to 224,279 in 2015. All candidates ran as independents. During election campaigning, many candidates focused on social issues, promising to provide better housing and more health services. Others focused on job creation and better educational services. Turnout increased from 27.25% to 35.29%. As in the 2011 elections, one woman was among the 20 winners. On 18 November, the newly elected members were sworn in alongside the 20 appointed members, including eight women.

The 2015 elections used a single-vote system (meaning each voter voted for only one candidate in his/her emirate). Previously, voters were allowed to vote for as many as half the number of seats from their respective emirates. Eligible voters outside the country were allowed to vote for the first time in 2015.[14]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ "Legislative body forms a pillar of governance". gulfnews.com. September 25, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
  2. ^ "A vote for the country's future". gulfnews.com. September 25, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
  3. ^ a b "About the Federal National Council". khaleejtimes.com. 4 July 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
  4. ^ "fnc_KT". arabiangazette.com. September 4, 2011. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
  5. ^ Staff Report. "What is the Federal National Council." Gulfnews.com
  6. ^ a b UAE Politics. The Political System of the UAE Archived 2010-05-03 at the Wayback Machine
  7. ^ a b "The Federal National Council - The Official Portal of the UAE Government". www.government.ae.
  8. ^ a b c d e f "In Pictures: A step in the right direction". Khaleej Times.
  9. ^ a b c d e f g h i https://www.gsws.ae/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/EN_FNC-Brochure-English-FINAL.pdf
  10. ^ "IPU PARLINE database: UNITED ARAB EMIRATES (Majlis Watani Itihadi) ELECTIONS IN 2006". archive.ipu.org.
  11. ^ "IPU PARLINE database: UNITED ARAB EMIRATES (Majlis Watani Itihadi), ELECTIONS IN 2011". archive.ipu.org.
  12. ^ "IFES Election Guide - Country Profile: United Arab Emirates". www.electionguide.org.
  13. ^ The Report: Dubai 2007. The Oxford Business Group. 2007
  14. ^ a b "IPU PARLINE database: UNITED ARAB EMIRATES (Majlis Watani Itihadi), Last elections". archive.ipu.org.

References[edit]

External links[edit]