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You decide the law
The UAE Federal National Council is planning to allow residents to comment on draft laws through its website.
June 8, 2009 2:01 by Aarti Nagraj
The UAE Federal National Council (FNC) is planning to create a window on its Web site where people can preview draft laws. They’ll be able to express their “thoughts, opinions and suggestions” before the Council discusses the laws in its committees, reports WAM, the UAE’s official news agency.
FNC Speaker Abdul Aziz Abdullah Al Ghurair has said that this service will begin with the publication of the ‘Marriage Fund’ draft law, as the Council is preparing to discuss this law along with its amendments. The FNC specially selected this draft bill because of its “paramount importance in relation to the life of the citizens,” he said.
“People will be given adequate time to learn this law, so that their participation in the legal formulation will be more effective,” says the WAM report, quoting Al Ghurair.
According to WAM, the idea is to create “an opportunity for the citizens, as well as for all those with an interest in the legal development of the country.”
“The FNC, since the beginning of its 14th legislative chapter in February 2007, has embarked on a host of e-services that aim to engage all Emirati citizens and enhance the FNC’s communication with them,” Al Ghurair said.
It will be interesting to see how effective the system will turn out to be. Will the council actually take into account the suggestions offered by people? Will the system be applied to sensitive draft laws as well, such as laws related to visas and residency, or the public code of conduct in the country?
Also, what do they mean by “those [people] with an interest in the legal development of the country”? Will there be some screening for non-Emirati nationals?
Will you give your opinion on the FNC website (if it is open to you)? And do you think your voice will make a difference?