President Sheikh Mohamed pays tribute on death of Saeed bin Ahmed Al Otaiba

Born in 1916, Al Otaiba served in government and was a confidant of Sheikh Zayed

Saeed bin Ahmed Al Otaiba was born in 1916 in Abu Dhabi’s Al Dhahr neighbourhood. Photo: UAE Presidential Court
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President Sheikh Mohamed has paid tribute following the death of prominent Emirati Saeed bin Ahmed Al Otaiba.

Mr Al Otaiba was a key player in the early days of the UAE, serving as President of the Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce and Industry in 1971. He was also a confidant of UAE Founding Father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.

His death was announced by family members on Wednesday.

"May God have mercy on Saeed bin Ahmed Al Otaiba, who worked with dedication as a close companion of the late Sheikh Zayed," Sheikh Mohamed wrote on X, formerly Twitter.

"I extend my sincere condolences to his family at this difficult time."

Mr Al Otaiba was born in 1916 in Abu Dhabi’s Al Dhahr neighbourhood. He worked as a pearl trader and later sold commodities in several countries.

He served in several government roles and was elected chairman of the UAE Federation of the Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Abu Dhabi Media Office said.

He was also well known as a poet and the Al Otaiba family remains prominent in the UAE today.

His son, Mana Al Otaiba, 78, who was Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources under Sheikh Zayed's presidency, had earlier confirmed his father's death in a message on Instagram.

Sheikha Khawla bint Ahmed Khalifa Al Suwaidi, Mr Al Otaiba's niece, also paid tribute to him on social media.

"May Allah forgive my uncle, Saeed bin Ahmed bin Khalaf Al Otaiba, and grant him a place in his vast paradise. Indeed, we belong to Allah and to Him we shall return," Sheikha Khawla wrote on Instagram.

A street in Abu Dhabi was renamed in 2022 in honour of Mr Al Otaiba. Saeed bin Ahmed Al Otaiba Street – formerly Delma Street – recognised Mr Al Otaiba's contribution to the emirate's economy and cultural heritage, Abu Dhabi Media Office reported at the time.

The new street sign was established under a directive from President Sheikh Mohamed.

Updated: May 29, 2024, 1:14 PM