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I continue to suffer from many complexes and search for my identity all the time. Is it more appropriate for me to belong to the sea or the land? At times I visit the animal farms run by my friends in the Western Region and feel I am actually here. At other times, I go into the sea in Ajman with my friends and feel I belong there. Last Friday, my friend in the Coast Guard refused to go into the sea along with the group of friends under any circumstance. No amount of cajoling would make him budge an inch and made it clear his was the final decision. Whoever does not carry the ID card would not venture into the sea, he ruled. The Law is supreme!

You know that your ID card carries your beautiful picture and you use it for many things. I wish its use could be further expanded to include everything in life. I wish a day will come on which we do not carry our driver’s licenses, car ownership card, health card, library card from Sharjah Library, access card for parks, exchange card from Western Union and thousands of other cards we carry. Before I forget, let me add the ATM card as well……They are an organization that works. It is said they have a wonderful workforce that is beautiful, quick in service delivery and excellent in performance. They have air-conditioned buildings offering Wi-Fi service too!

The point is that many government departments do not let you enter nowadays without producing your ID card at the entrance. Frankly, I don’t know if it is legal but it happens. Naturally, it is great that your meeting inside a government department is fruitful. So you rush out, spread the news among your partners and later realize you had left your ID at the entrance! After five meetings daily throughout the week for a period of a whole month, you don’t remember in which department you left your ID. Returning to all of those departments and enquiring after your ID as if you are a child who lost its toy is a trifle embarrassing: is my identity here? Does the picture not resemble me? I swear it is me. I know my granddad’s name is weird! It had derived from a species of peregrines….feign ignorance about what you don’t know!

Keeping the ID then becomes the duty of an employee in that department, who over time begins to feel you are late to take it back. He tries to call you or look for your number but finally returns it to the Authority which delivers it back to you. Of course it is a favor from them. There is another type who leaves your ID in his shelf until it gathers rust and you discover you had lost it while you are at the border crossing in Khatm Al Mallaha. You will definitely be forced to return home. Good right?!

It will not please anyone to be in that situation, except for the fish ‘Hamour’ that escaped from the iron grip. (That is my name in the sea). It will be nice of the government entities and the Identity Authority to put in place some mechanism to return the ID cards to their owners. This is particularly so if they are planning to expand the use of the card.

May you be healthy. By the way, how much for card replacement?

Abdullah Al Shuweikh Al Emarat Al Yaum
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