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What’s on the cards
The UAE government has been trying to hasten the adoption of national identity cards, but Kipp’s poll suggests over half of residents are against them.
May 17, 2010 5:17 by Rasha Reslan
Residents of Ras Al Khaimah, Fujairah, Ajman and Umm Al Quwain – both locals and expatriates – have been told to produce ID cards to access any traffic and licensing services throughout the country since November 2009.
In a follow-up development, the Ministry of Interior announced that they were extending this decision to cover the remaining three emirates — Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah – starting May 2, 2010.
The news caused quite a fuss among residents, who have been rushing to Emirates ID card registration centers in the days since.
To ease the panic, the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in Dubai said last Monday that the ID card was not compulsory for registration of vehicles, or other transport-related transactions, as reported by local media.
Last week, Kipp asked its readers if they believe that the UAE should scrap its plans for compulsory ID cards.
Interestingly, only just over half of people think the plans for cards should be scrapped as a waste of time – Kipp thought it would be more.
Of the remaining respondents, 22.5 percent believe that ID cards are essential for security reasons, while 14.5 percent of Kipp’s readers consider ID cards an efficient way to access government services.
The remaining 7 percent of Kipp’s readers rejected the idea of compulsory ID cards, but only because they think the cards are too difficult to obtain.