The deputy ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum, passed away on Wednesday at age 75.
His death was announced by his brother, the ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum on Twitter with a picture of the deceased saying: “We belong to God and to Him we shall return … May God have mercy on you, my brother, my support and my companion.”
Hamdan had reportedly been unwell for months.
Born in Dubai in 1947, Hamdan served as the United Arab Emirates’ (UAE) finance minister for over 50 years, since 1971, when the country was founded.
He went on to serve in several other positions in the UAE and Dubai, including deputy ruler of Dubai and head of the Dubai municipality.
Hamdan was known for his passion for culture, literature, humanitarian work, and scientific development. He initiated the launch of the Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Distinguished Academic Performance, and the Sheikh Hamdan bin Rashid Al Maktoum Award for Medical Sciences.
He also chaired many high-level government bodies and institutions that play a vital role in supporting the economy and the labor market in the UAE and Dubai.
The most important of these include the Al Maktoum Foundation, Dubai World Trade Center, the Emirates National Petroleum Company Limited, and Dubai Natural Gas Company Limited.
*Writing by Ibrahim Mukhtar