Strength of electoral college to jump to 70,000

UAE is going to the polls on September 24 and the strength of Electoral College is likely to jump up to 70,000, a senior leader said.

The number is a drastic rise from the 2006 numbers when the Electoral College consisted of just 6,700 members.

Arabic daily Al Khaleej quoted Dr. Anwar Mohammed Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Minister of State for Federal National Council Affairs and President of the National Elections Committee, as saying that the number of voters for this year’s election – handpicked by the rulers of each emirate – would jump up ten times.

The Electoral College, which includes smaller electoral bodies from each emirate chosen by the rulers of the respective emirate, is the cream of the UAE society comprising both men and women.

Talking about the 2011 election at the at Zayed University in Abu Dhabi Dr Gargash said, "this election is part of the programme of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of UAE, which aims to promote political participation and progressive development.”

He added that the 2011 elections will mark a new phase in the development and quality of political life in the UAE.

The elections are planned for the later part of this year and the emirates are currently busy forming electoral bodies to choose the FNC members.

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