SHARJAH // Ninety-six youngsters have been elected to the Children's Consultative Council.
Yesterday's announcement by Aysha Ali Sultan Al Kaabi, the head of Children Centres in Sharjah, followed ballots at schools across the emirate in January and February.
"For a child to qualify to be elected to the council they have to be an Emirati aged between 10 to 13 for boys and 10 to 14 years for girls," Ms Al Kaabi said. "The children have to undergo a campaign at their respective schools and show leadership skills to their colleagues."
This year's president will be Khalifa Al Kaabi, 12.
The Children's Council was established in 1997 by Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Sharjah's Ruler, as the Children's Parliament.
The name was changed in 1999 to give it a closer connection with the emirate's advisory body, the Sharjah Consultative Council.
"The Ruler had a vision to build a vibrant new generation by instilling the culture of democracy and tolerance among the children," said Dr Mohammed Al Mansouri, the secretary of cultural activities at the Family Affairs Council.
The council hosts two sessions each year with the first to be on April 23 in the presence of Sheikh Al Qasimi. During this meeting, the children will watch presentations by key media figures. The second session is expected to be in October.
As well as attending council sessions, Dr Al Mansouri said members would take part in a series of leadership training programmes.