Dubai / WAM
His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Chairman of Dubai Executive Council, and Chairman of the Dubai Sports Council, on Wednesday honoured the winners of the 9th Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Creative Sports Award at a ceremony at the Dubai World Trade Centre (DWTC).
The Award is an entity that operates under the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiatives.
Speaking on the occasion, Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed, said, “We are a country that prides itself on taking a creative approach to work and offering a fertile ground for creative people. We strongly support creative athletes and officials since they contribute – not just locally but also internationally – towards the advancement of sport. Sport is not just an important human activity but also a reflection of a country’s progress and evolution.
“The ninth edition of the Award takes on even greater significance as it is being held at the beginning of the Year of Zayed, a year that is associated with the ideals of the beloved founder of our country, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan. We follow his lead in all our work and all our initiatives, and our aim is to build a better future for our youth and sports.”
Praising the efforts of the athletes, Sheikh Hamdan said, “We are aware of the extraordinary efforts of all the winners and their notable achievements, which have raised the level of competition. The winning local and international sports organisations have offered programmes and initiatives that have supported the Award’s noble objectives, especially the main focus of the ninth edition of the awards – the empowerment of women in sports.”
“They are all deserving winners of an award that has the honour of carrying the name of the Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum,” he continued. “The Award was created to implement the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed and encourage creativity in sport by honouring creative athletes, officials and organisations, and supporting their work.”
The Award, launched in 2009, has given away a total prize money of AED61 million since its inception and honoured a total of 302 local, Arab and global winners representing 54 countries. The award ceremony featured a number of sporting activities that highlighted the values of competition, creativity and ambition.
HRH Princess Rima bint Bandar bin Sultan Al Saud, who became the first woman to lead a Saudi sports federation when she took over as President of the Federation for Community Sports in October this year, received the Arab Sports Personality Award. Princess Rima also holds the position of Deputy President of Saudi Arabia’s Sports Authority for Planning and Development
Princess Rima delivered a speech on behalf of all the winners in which she thanked H.H. Sheikh Hamdan and the organisers of the Award. She said that Arab youth are driving creativity and progress in the region, and the values and ethos that Arab sportsmen share are helping them succeed in various international competitions.
HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Knowledge Foundation, President of the UAE National Olympic Committee and Chairman of the Award, honoured six UAE emerging athletes.
Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Creative Sports Award, Mattar Al Tayer thanked H.H. Sheikh Hamdan, the patron of the award, for his “unlimited support and guidance” and the President of the UAE National Olympic Committee, His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum for his “leadership”, which have helped turn the awards into one of the most sought-after recognitions not just in the Arab world but also on the global stage.
“The increase in the number of entries at all levels – local, Arab and international – confirms the status of the award and the significant role it plays in achieving the desired development of the sports sector, and the establishment of a culture of creativity and excellence in sports work,” Al Tayer said.
The ceremony was attended by HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Civil Aviation Authority and Chief Executive of Emirates Group; Sheikh Hasher bin Maktoum Al Maktoum, Chairman of Dubai Media Incorporated; Lt. Gen. Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, Deputy Chairman of Police and Public Security; Major General Mohammed Khalfan Al Romaithi, Chairman of the General Authority for Sports, and Saeed Hareb, Secretary-General of Dubai Sports Council, along with a number of senior officials and sports personalities.