Dubai: United Arab Emirates finance minister and deputy ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan Bin Rashid Al Maktoum passed away on Wednesday. He had been unwell for some months now.
Sheikh Hamdan, aged 75, was the brother of Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE, and Ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid shared the news through the official Twitter account.
Taking to Twitter, Sheikh Mohammed wrote: “We belong to God and to Him we shall return. May God have mercy on you, my brother, my support and my companion.”
Sheikh Hamdan was born on December 25, 1945 and was the second son of the late ruler Sheikh Rashid Bin Saeed Al Maktoum.
Sheikh Hamdan’s formal schooling began in Dubai. He did his early schooling at the Al-Ahlia school in Dubai and completed his further studies at the Bell School of Languages in Cambridge.
Sheikh Hamdan became the UAE’s first Minister of Finance and Industry in 1971, a position he held until his death. He played a vital role in developing the country’s financial policies and government spending.
He chaired several high-level government entities that were instrumental in helping the UAE’s economy and labor market. These included the Dubai Municipality, the Al Maktoum Foundation, Dubai Aluminum (Dubal) and Dubai Natural Gas Company Limited (DUGAS), and the Dubai World Trade Center.
In 2006, Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid received three certificates from the Royal British College, making him the first person to receive such a distinction.
In addition to his passion for horses, he also enjoyed hunting and dhow racing.
UAE president Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan announced ten-day mourning in Dubai following the passing of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum.
Work at government departments and institutions in the Emirate will be suspended for three days, starting tomorrow, Thursday, March 24.
Flags in Dubai will be flown at half-mast for ten days starting today (March 24).
Prayers will be restricted to family members due to the pandemic circumstances. The absentee prayer will be performed for the late Sheikh Hamdan, in the state’s mosques today after the Maghrib prayer.