Dubai: More than 1.3 lakh voters chosen by the rulers of the UAE will cast their ballots on Saturday to elect half the members of the 40-strong consultative Federal National Council (FNC).
    
All the 467 candidates, including 85 women, have been campaigning extensively to garner support ahead of the polls, for which preparations have been completed.
    
Saturday's elections will be the largest ever polls to the consultative body in the country's history, local authorities said.
    
More than 1.3 lakh voters from all the seven emirates of the country will cast their ballots to elect 20 members of the Federal National Council. The rest of the 20 representatives will be chosen by the traditional rulers of the emirates.
    
The country's leaders called the polls an important step towards enhancing the public's active participation in supporting the march of development in the country.
    
UAE President Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan appealed to the citizens to actively participate in the elections.     

"On this important national occasion, I call upon my sons and daughters, the members of electoral bodies, to participate actively in the elections so that we can achieve real participation," the President in his message.
    
Polling at various stations will be telecast live on local television channels. The National Election Committee has announced that transportation for voters will be provided on the day of the polling.
    
In a message carried by the UAE's official news agency, WAM, Shaikh Mohammad bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, said the election is "a test of the people of the UAE to exercise their right in electing the candidates whom they deem as good, competent and able to carry over their views into the council."

(Agencies)