UAE president 'elected' again... by his cousins and brothers

UAE president 'elected' again... by his cousins and brothers
Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahyan was voted as president again by the UAE's rulers.
2 min read
07 November, 2019
Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed has been 'elected' for a fourth time [Getty]

Abu Dhabi ruler Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al-Nahyan was "elected" as UAE president on Wednesday by the heads of the country's seven emirates, according to local media.

Sheikh Khalifa will oversee the Supreme Council for a fourth term, the UAE's federal body that is in charge of key decision making in the country.

Seventy-one year-old Khalifa will serve for five years as head of the UAE's highest constitutional authority after leaders of the other six emirates backed his appointment in a process widely seen as symbolic.

The Abu Dhabi ruler was appointed first president after the death of the founder of the UAE Sheikh Zayed Al-Nahyan in 2004 and has served in the role since.

Abu Dhabi is the largest of the UAE's seven emirates and has dominated the Gulf state's political structure since its formation in 1971.

"President Khalifa accompanied the builder of the UAE renaissance, the late Shaikh Zayed, in the founding stage in the 70s and 80s of the last century before taking over the leadership of the country after the death of the Founding Father," the council said in a statement.

"[He] led the country towards the achievement stage that contributed to empowering the Emirati citizens, and the prosperity of the UAE, and its prominence locally and globally."

Although Khalifa is officially the UAE's ruler, his brother and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed is widely viewed as the country's decision maker.