The Emirates Center for Strategic Studies and Research (ECSSR) Lecture No. (689) H.E. Eng. Azza Sulaiman bin Sulaiman, Member of the UAE Federal National Council (FNC): “The Philosophy of the Wise Leadership is the Cornerstone of Empowering Emirati Women”

The Emirates Center for Strategic Studies and Research (ECSSR) held a lecture titled ‘Empowering Emirati Women in Parliamentary Action’, delivered by H.E. Eng. Azza Sulaiman bin Sulaiman, Member of the UAE Federal National Council (FNC), on Wednesday evening, August 28, 2019, in the Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Hall, at the ECSSR complex in Abu Dhabi.

The lecture was held on Emirati Women’s Day, which takes place each year on August 28. During the packed event, a new book, Women and Development, written by H.E. Prof. Jamal Sanad Al-Suwaidi, Director General of the ECSSR, was given to attendees. The book explores the most pressing issues facing women and their vital role in development, as well as the challenges they encounter in this role.

H.E. Eng. Azza Sulaiman bin Sulaiman began her lecture by thanking Prof. Al-Suwaidi, praising the active role the ECSSR plays in the service of society. She also expressed how much she values the Center’s efforts to support Emirati women through publications, conferences, symposia and workshops, which focus on activating women’s role in the UAE’s development process.

In her lecture, H.E. Eng. Azza Sulaiman bin Sulaiman stressed that credit goes first to the UAE’s wise leadership for the great achievements of Emirati women in political, economic, social and cultural spheres, particularly in political empowerment. H.E. Eng. Azza Sulaiman highlighted the role H.H. Sheikha Fatima bint Mubarak, Chairwoman of the General Women’s Union (GWU), President of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, and Supreme Chairwoman of the Family Development Foundation (FDF) and ‘Mother of the UAE’, plays in providing an environment conducive to supporting and empowering UAE women to actively participate in all areas of public life.

H.E. Eng. Azza Sulaiman bin Sulaiman explored the UAE journey in empowering women, highlighting how the political empowerment of women has become a reality. Her Excellency provided statistics that confirm women’s effective engagement in public life and told how women hold 20 percent of the current FNC’s membership. They also constitute 66 percent of government employees. H.E. Eng. Azza Sulaiman bin Sulaiman explained that women’s admission to the FNC has introduced them to new and varied experiences, in light of the enriching parliamentary experience in the UAE. She also stressed the vital role of female voters in electing the FNC’s members as representatives of society, reflecting its issues.

H.E. Eng. Azza Sulaiman bin Sulaiman also spoke of her own experience in parliamentary work, giving insights into the opportunities that are open to Emirati women to contribute to the growth and development process, and to fulfil their own potential. Her Excellency explained that the increase in women’s representation in the FNC to 50 percent is a result of the political empowerment program, which is the gateway to parliamentary work in the future. She encouraged women to seize the opportunity for parliamentary engagement, to accomplish the goals and aspirations of the UAE community.

Concluding, H.E. Eng. Azza Sulaiman bin Sulaiman commended the remarkable role of UAE institutions, which focus on leveraging women’s involvement in public life. She also illustrated how the current position of UAE women is the first step in a long journey of achievements, stressing that the UAE, at this time, is full of opportunities for any woman seeking to serve her community. She called upon Emirati women to make the most of these opportunities.