UAE Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, on Wednesday wrapped up the two-day Arab Social Media Influencers Summit with an open dialogue session with the participants of the first edition of the event organised under his patronage.
In the Q&A session, H.H. Sheikh Mohammed emphasised that social media created a new reality, removed a lot of barriers and helped make thousands of creative people and influencers famous.
He said that the UAE had the belief that social will play a role in changing the lifestyles of peoples, and was able, form the very beginning, to use these media to receive remarks, ideas and proposals for improving government services and use this feedback to make its people happy.
He noted that in a brainstorming session during a retreat for his Cabinet team, some 80,000 ideas were gathered and discussed and a number of these ideas were adopted.
H.H. Sheikh Mohammed also noted that his mantra on social media is the Quranic verse in which Allah says that He made mankind into nations and tribes, that they may know one another. This is so because good and well-being lie in the process of making acquaintances, exchanging knowledge and sharing experiences and exploring new opportunities with other peoples, he noted.
"The Islamic Civilisation was able to achieve prosperity when it opened up to, and interacted positively with other civilisations and built on their contributions to benefit humanity by generously disseminating knowledge and publicising inventions."
Answering a question on how he could make so many achievements, H.H. Sheikh Mohammed said, "Many social media users talk about Mohammed bin Rashid. The secret (to success) does not lie in Mohammed bin Rashid. Rather it lies in the thousands of teams who work day and night to make achievements."
Noting that he sets the direction for these teams through a clear vision, H.H. Sheikh Mohammed added that he follows up on their work and encourage them and that they are the real heroes who deserve thanks and appreciation. He further noted that new ideas come up during his weekly follow-up meetings with the work teams.
Answering a question from a social media influencer about the UAE's large number of diverse projects, H.H. Sheikh Mohammed said that the secret to this lies in the fact that the door is open for proposals from all people and that the role of the government is to listen, implement and follow-up.
Answering another question about the high quality that visitors immediately recognise in the UAE, he said that when thinks of quality, he starts with taking in the taxi driver first, along with service people at airports, staff and services of hotels all the way up to the highest levels. The result, he noted is that all those who visit us come back to us.
In answering a question from another Arab social media influencer about his own guards, H.H Sheikh Mohammed said that one day he was walking in one of the markets when a foreign shopper approached him to ask the same question "Where are your guards Sheikh Mohammed?"
Sheikh Mohammed answered, "Look around you. Don't you see them?". The shopper said, "I only see shoppers".
Sheikh Mohammed then said, "These people are my guards." H.H Sheikh Mohammed commented that being loved by people is what provides any leader with the strongest protection and that it is always under protection from Allah Almighty.
At the conclusion of the session H.H. Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid told participants who insisted on posing for photos with him that they are always welcome in the UAE and that their interaction contributed to the success of the summit which he stressed will always be an annual forum for them just as the UAE is always a gathering place for all Arab creative people.