If this year marks the “Year of Giving,” the following year shall be called the “Year of Zayed,” in honor of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, the founding father of the UAE. The year 2018 marks the 100th birth year of the celebrated leader.
This declaration was made by the President of the UAE, His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who made the announcement on August 6, 2017. The day coincided with the anniversary of the former ruler’s Accession Day, when he became the leader of Abu Dhabi.
UAE President Declares 2018 as “Year of Zayed”
Primarily, the “Year of Zayed” will focus on the late leader’s role in forming the UAE Federation. It will also feature his achievements in the local, regional, and international levels.
Notably, the objectives of the “Year of Zayed” shall be to:
- Highlight the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan’s role in establishing the UAE
- Share about Sheikh Zayed’s vision, values, principles, wisdom, and inspirational leadership
- Fortify Sheikh Zayed’s stature as a symbol of patriotism and love for the UAE
- Portray the legacy of Sheikh Zayed in upcoming projects and initiatives
Celebrating the Legacy of UAE’s Founding Father
“The Year of Zayed is a great national occasion when we will proudly share memories of the life of the founding father, Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, and his gift to us of deeply-rooted values, principles, and traditions that have become part of our Emirati identify,” stated His Highness the President Sheikh Khalifa.
His Highness the President recalled that the late Sheikh Zayed was able to establish solid foundations for a strong and united nation. He embraced modernity while preserving the cultural heritage of the UAE — an act that continues to inspire other countries to this day.
“The Year of Zayed will be a year in which the nation preserves the legacy of Zayed, and our people will live the values of Zayed, and work together to fulfill the vision of Zayed,” President Sheikh Khalifa declared. He also noted that the founding father’s legacy will influence not only the UAE, but also Arab and Muslim nations worldwide.
One of the Greatest and Most Noble Men of the UAE
Likewise, HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, praised the late Sheikh Zayed. “We celebrate the centennial anniversary of the birth of one of the greatest and most noble men who dedicated his life for the present and future of the nation,” he stated.
The Dubai Ruler remarked that the late Sheikh Zayed was known in the Arab world for his great wisdom and insight. Rather than dwelling on differences and rivalries between Arab states, he focused on building and strengthening international relations instead.
What’s more, the late Sheikh Zayed’s established the following, among others:
- Abu Dhabi Fund for Development (1971), which assisted and contributed to numerous humanitarian development projects
- Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan Charitable and Humanitarian Foundation (1992), which assisted underprivileged individuals inside and outside the UAE
The year 2018 will be a time of looking back at one of the UAE’s greatest leaders. At the same time, it will also pave the way for greater creativity, development, and innovation. By learning more about this nation’s illustrious past, we can expect to take part in its bright and prosperous future.