Three-day mourning period in Fujairah after death of Deputy Ruler

Hundreds of mourners attended funeral prayers for the Deputy Ruler of Fujairah, Sheikh Hamad bin Saif Al Sharqi, on Thursday after his death on Wednesday.

Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, Ruler of Fujairah, and Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, were among those performing funeral prayers for Sheikh Hamad bin Saif Al Sharqi, Deputy Ruler of Fujairah, on Thursday. Wam
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FUJAIRAH // Hundreds of mourners attended funeral prayers for Sheikh Hamad bin Saif Al Sharqi, Deputy Ruler of Fujairah, on Thursday after his death on Wednesday.

Many of the country’s leaders mixed with citizens at Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Fujairah to pay tribute to Sheikh Hamad. Three days of mourning were declared by the President, Sheikh Khalifa, and flags flew at half-mast.

Sheikh Khalifa mourned the Sheikh Hamad’s death and prayed that Allah would rest his soul in eternal peace.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the Armed Forces, was also in mourning.

Sheikh Mohammed received condolences from King Salman of Saudi Arabia.

Among those joining the Royal Family at the funeral prayers were Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah, Crown Princes of RAK and Ajman, and Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak, Minister of Culture and Knowledge Development.

Sheikh Hamad bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, Ruler of Fujairah, received condolences at Al Remailah Palace from Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Ruler of Sharjah, and Sheikh Saud bin Rashid Al Mualla, Ruler of Umm Al Quwain.

Kuwaiti prime minister Sheikh Nasser Al Ahmed Al Sabah and his delegation, and GCC ambassadors, also passed on their condolences.

Iranians Ismail Aziz, 32, and Ihsanallah Ali, 43, who have lived in Fujairah for 16 years, were among residents at the funeral, and said Sheikh Hamad helped low-paid workers.

“Sheikh Hamad is well known,” said Mr Aziz, who runs a tyre shop. “He has overseen a lot of the projects that developed this emirate.”

“He is well known to us, especially for those who have been living here for a long time. Attending the funeral is the least we can do for this great man.”

Mr Ali, a lorry driver at the public works department, said Sheikh Hamad ensured that workers had good living conditions.

“He used to talk to a lot of the workers at the department and make sure that if we faced any problems, he would do what he could to help us,” he said.

Ghasan Balkis, who had known Sheikh Hamad bin Saif since the late 1970s, said: “In the beginning it was a working relationship, but he used to come daily to the showroom after asr [afternoon] prayers and we used to pray maghrib [sunset] together.

“He was like my father. He was helpful and solved many of the emirate’s problems. He had a lot of good in him.”

Mr Balkis met Sheikh Hamad bin Saif when he first arrived in Fujairah as managing director of Ahmed Zayani and Sons car showroom.

“I was talking to his son on WhatsApp at 10.29pm yesterday and then I received the news of his death at midnight,” he said.

Emirati Majid Abdullah, 32, said Sheikh Hamad was a humble and kind man.

“He is known in the emirate as a man of good deeds and kind, always helping others in need,” Mr Abdullah said.

He said the news came as shock to him and his father on Thursday.

“We heard early in the morning the news of his death,” said Mr Abdullah, a government employee. “I came with a few of my co-workers to pray for his soul, may he rest in peace.”

Everyone in the emirate was sad to have lost a loved and admired person, said Emirati Abdulrahman Al Kaabi, 47.

“He is loved by both Emiratis and residents of the emirate – you can see that by the amount of people who left their jobs and closed their businesses to attend the funeral prayers and burial.”

tzriqat@thenational.ae

additional reporting by Haneen Al Dajani

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