As the nation’s founder, Sheikh Zayed left a legacy of tolerance, philanthropy and progress that has lasted long after his 33-year reign.
It’s with this in mind that 2018 is to be marked as the Year of Zayed to highlight the founding father’s instrumental role in UAE history and celebrate the man that made the nation.
Announced on the anniversary of his accession on 6th August 1966, the Year of Zayed will mark the centenary of Sheikh Zayed’s birth, and will foreground his hand in unifying the UAE’s emirates under the Federation, as well as his values and character.
Born in 1918 in Al Ain, Sheikh Zayed was the leader for modernity and dynamic change in the emirate and, later, across the country.
The founder of the Federation in 1971, he believed in the power of unifying the emirates as one nation, as well as bringing prosperity and progress with the export of oil, education for women and his efforts to protect the natural environment.
With tolerance, giving and unity at the heart of his rule, a national strategy will be formed to highlight Sheikh Zayed’s contributions to the UAE throughout the year.
Commenting on the year to come, Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and deputy supreme commander of the UAE Armed Forces said: “The Year of Zayed is an occasion to celebrate the achievements of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and their future impact.
“Sheikh Zayed is an example for every Emirati citizen, and loyalty to his legacy must be followed through his principles and values. Today, we need to learn from these authentic national values, and draw lessons from them in order to continue developing the nation’s renaissance on the global map.”