A new committee for tolerance has been set up by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the UAE’s Vice President and Prime Minister and Dubai’s ruler in line with the country’s plan to observe 2019 as the ‘Year of Tolerance’.
The committee will be chaired by Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, and will include ministers and representatives from UAE civil society organisations as its members.
Ministerial members include: Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, minister of Tolerance; Noura bint Mohammed Al Kaabi, minister of Culture and Knowledge Development; Nasser bin Thani Al Hamli, minister of Human Resources and Emiratisation; Hessa Essa Buhumaid, minister of Community Development; Jameela Al Muheiri, minister of State for Public Education, Dr. Sultan bin Ahmad Sultan Al Jaber, minister of State and chairman of the National Media Council; Ohoud bint Khalfan Al Roumi, minister of State for Happiness and Wellbeing; Shamma bint Suhail Faris Al Mazrui, minister of State for Youth Affairs; and Zaki Nusseibeh, minister of State.
The committee will also comprise of Dr Ali Rashid Al Nuaimi, chairman of the World Council of Muslim Communities; Dr. Ali bin Tamim, director-general of Abu Dhabi Media Company; Dr. Hamad Al Sheikh Ahmed Al Shaibani, managing director of the International Institute for Tolerance; Dr. Sultan Faisal Al Rumaithi, secretary-general of the Muslim Council of Elders; Yasser Hareb, Emirati writer and media personality; Sunny Varkey, founder of GEMS Education and Varkey Foundation; Isobel Abulhoul, CEO and trustee of the Emirates Literature Foundation, and Dr. Najat Makki, Emirati conceptual artist, along with representatives from executive boards within the country.
The committee’s mission will be to consolidate values of tolerance within the UAE community, and spread the model worldwide, Sheikh Mohammed said.
Sheikh Mohammed urged the members to work on a comprehensive framework for the Year of Tolerance, formulating a strategy to serve the main objectives behind the year, and to monitor its implementation.
He also directed the committee to develop a plan of action in partnership all segments of society, using initiatives that will have a direct, positive impact on the UAE community as a whole.
He also called for the formation of local committees in coordination with relevant authorities across each of the emirates, within a framework bringing together local and federal efforts towards attaining the primary objectives behind the Year of Tolerance.
“We want the UAE to be the global reference point for a tolerant culture, via its policies, laws and practices,” Sheikh Mohammed said.
The ‘Year of Tolerance’ will be an extension of the current ‘Year of Zayed’, which celebrates the values of the country’s founding father Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan.
It will seek to highlight the UAE’s role as a global capital for tolerance through “various legislative and policy-oriented goals” designed to instil the values of co-existence and peace.
It revolves around seven pillars including tolerance in the community, education, workplace, culture, legislation, media and the UAE model of tolerance.