Abu Dhabi: Shaikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan had a way with people. He was firm but loving, he had tact, but could be direct. And if his people knocked on his door for help, Shaikh Zayed always let them in and banished their worries.
A supremely charismatic leader, Shaikh Zayed has touched hearts and inspired minds. His legacy lives in every corner of the country, his words fire the imagination and his achievements are lessons for eternity in how to build a nation and its people.
The stories of how Shakh Zayed touched the lives of people, from every walk of life, are legion. Thousands upon thousands of expressions of respect, admiration, awe and love thrive and flourish in the hearts of the people in the UAE, Emiratis and expatriates alike.
Shaikh Zayed having lunch with a group of citizens during his tour of Delma Island in 1980. Photo: WAM/Gulf News Archives
Shaikh Zayed was a down-to-earth leader and visionary who lived for his people. From his legendary personal visits to his people enquiring about their welfare and offering them every reassurance on addressing their concerns to his countless efforts in every shpere of life, from providing low-cost homes, improving education, attending to the issues of farmers, the requirements for an agricultural foundation, to the development of UAE’s superlative infrastructure and progress, Shaikh Zayed’s people touch was peerless and evident in the way he wrought the transformation of UAE.
His concern for the welfare of expatriates is also a foundational ethos.
Countless are the stories of his kindness, sagacity and humility, that are enmeshed with the fabric of UAE, giving it strength, courage, passion and generosity in intent and deed that is guiding its progress to greater glories.