Dubai – A youth delegation from the first batch of graduates of the ‘Young Parliamentarians’ program visited the Kingdom of Bahrain to share experiences and learn about the best parliamentary practices. The visit, organised by Watani Al Emarat Foundation and the Federal Youth Authority, in partnership with the General Secretariat of the Shura Council, was aimed at developing participants’ leadership and political skills.

The visit served as a platform for exchanging knowledge, exploring best parliamentary practices and working mechanisms, as well as empowering participants to reach their full potential and contribute substantially to their communities, thereby crafting a bright future for the UAE.

The ‘Young Parliamentarians’ program was launched in early 2023 with the objective of enhancing youth awareness and knowledge in parliamentary government activities as well as establishing a youth platform for parliamentary action to contribute to the process of political empowerment. In addition, the initiative seeks to encourage young people to be pioneers in parliamentary work and fortify the role of youth in the UAE in political growth, while encouraging field scientific research and leveraging global best practices in youth parliamentary work.

HE Dr. Sultan bin Saif Al Neyadi, Minister of State for Youth Affairs, Director General of Federal Youth Authority, said: “The ‘Young Parliamentarians’ program is one of the many remarkable outcomes of the consistent approach adopted by the UAE and its wise leadership. The visit comes as part of the Foundation’s goal to strengthen collaboration in order to enhance youth work and young people’s contribution to development. It also aims to expand and diversify the range of youth programs, events, and activities in line with a well-defined strategy to identify and showcase young talent on a local, regional, and global scale. We are confident that by building on best practices in parliamentary work and exchanging experiences and knowledge with our brothers in Bahrain, this program will enable young people to successfully contribute to developing the future of our beloved country.”

HE Dherar Belhoul Al Falasi, Executive Director of Watani Al Emarat Foundation, emphasised the significance, authenticity, and depth of parliamentary life in the UAE. HE noted that the ‘Young Parliamentarians’ program fosters a culture of political engagement among citizens as well as help improve the relationship between the people and their leadership. Al Falasi highlighted that the program is a pioneering gesture to help young people in parliamentary work and urged them to leverage this initiative to learn about the true meaning of political and development work and its relation to work and achievement of the nation’s bright future.

His Excellency added: “The visit to the Kingdom of Bahrain served as an essential step in the process of empowering the UAE youth in the parliamentary sphere. This is consistent with our goal of fostering national identity, good citizenship, and empowerment of UAE youth. The visit was a unique opportunity for educating young people about the political and government activities as well as the best practices utilised in this field. This is in accordance with the wise leadership’s guidance and vision to empower youth, enhance their abilities, and qualify them to take up the responsibility to be active partners in contributing to the decision-making process and the overall development process. We truly appreciate and value the role of the Shura Council of the Kingdom of Bahrain for their fruitful cooperation in promoting parliamentary awareness.”

Kareema Mohammed Abdullah Al-Abbasi, Secretary-General of the Shura Council, underscored the significance of this visit and its substantial contribution to the exchange of experiences between young people in both countries, particularly in enhancing political awareness and educating them about best practices in the parliamentary realm. She stated that in order to operationalise the program’s objectives, this coordination is part of the ‘Young Parliamentarians’ program’s mission to identify the democratic and parliamentary process in Bahrain. In addition to encouraging field scientific research and utilising international best practices in youth parliamentary work, she added that this program seeks to establish a base of young people who are well-prepared to engage in politics and become leaders in parliamentary work.

Al-Abbasi further noted the interest of the General Secretariat of the Shura Council to draw attention to the Kingdom of Bahrain’s leading experience in democratic practices and the contributions of the legislature within national development paths. She also emphasised the pivotal role of the General Secretariat of the Council in offering administrative, technical, and advisory support to improve the outcomes of legislative work. She pointed out that mutual visits provide everyone with the opportunity to exchange experiences, discover best practices, and gain insight from youth’s ideas to help shape their future goals and dreams.

Hamad Obaidalla, Chief Commercial Officer at flydubai, said: “We are always proud to support and empower young Emiratis in various international forums, in line with the vision of our wise leadership and his continued support to young people. flydubai, as a national carrier, is keen to facilitate the movement of trade and tourism, as well as support the local community. We constantly aim to increase the participation of our young citizens, which also serves as an ideal opportunity to highlight the achievements of the UAE and the pivotal role of young people in preserving these gains and reaching new heights."

The people in charge of the program stated that its goals were to offer young parliamentarians with access to a variety of continuous and diverse training opportunities, teach them about best practices, and help them benefit from the global parliaments’ development experiences. Additionally, it also sought to provide a supportive environment that offers guidance, training, and tools to qualify young people in parliamentary work, support their qualitative ideas, and boost their spirits. They further underlined the need for training to develop the capacities of parliamentary parties to keep abreast of developments, improve parliamentary performance in general, and meet the UAE’s need for young people with the necessary information and skills in the parliamentary sphere.

The program’s agenda includes visits by young participants to a number of bodies and institutions involved in parliamentary work in the Kingdom of Bahrain, in addition to a series of workshops and lectures, and the organisation of a simulation session of the mechanism of parliamentary discussions. The visit concluded with an interactive session between the ‘Young Parliamentarians’ members and an elite group of Bahraini youth.


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