It’s Urdu vs Malayalam for Eida third language

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Haseeb Haider

Abu Dhabi — The Emirates Identity Authority is exploring the possibility of adding a third language to its popular website, which is a treasure trove of information.

The portal is a platform where data can be fed in Arabic and English on individuals by typing centres, government departments and agencies.

In order to widen its service base, on March 1, the authority added an online poll on its portal asking stakeholders which of the four languages — Mandarin, Urdu, Malayalam and Tagalog — they would prefer to be added as a third language on its website, as part of a routine study. Since then a lot of interest has been generated among expatriates from different nationalities.

So far, the biggest interest has come from the Urdu speaking population from Pakistan and India as 170,958 clicks had been made until 4pm on Tuesday, which is 54.44 per cent of the total vote polled.

Malayalam speaking population from India’s southern state Kerala and parts of Tamil Nadu is voting for the language as 139,132 votes have been cast, that is about 44.3 per cent of the total polls.

Mandarin speaking population of the UAE believes that the language has to be made the third official language on the website which they use quite regularly, as 2,306 people or 0.73 per cent clicked for it.

Tagalog, the national language of the Philippines and parts of Malaysia and Indonesia, got 0.53 per cent or 1,654 votes, though the number of the community is quite strong and estimated to be around 400,000-500,000.

The interest shown by different nationalities reflects the huge utility of the website, as an individual can use it for tracking his/her Emirates Identity Card’s status. Typing centres and other service centres spread across the country use it for submitting applications on behalf of their customers for Emirates ID and other services.

In another on-going survey, 56.87 per cent voters said they used the website for checking ID card status, while 28.32 per cent used it for accessing E-form; 10.12 per cent used it to send a message to management and remaining 4.69 per cent sought info from Hamad, a service that offers FAQs.

According to the website around 9.6 million visits were registered in 2014, in contrast to 4 million visits in 2013, a growth of 140 per cent.

Eida online services

On February 15, the authority said, 64 per cent of respondents, in a survey, confirmed they were well aware of the diverse online services provided by the Emirates Identity Authority via its portal and social media channels. It is “indicative of the increasing public trust in and reliance on online services offered by government bodies in the UAE,” it said, in a statement.

The survey, which saw the participation of 4,723 individuals, shows that the people were moving away from the conventional modes of interaction with government entities and taking to smart methods, it said.

The Emirates ID conducts monthly surveys to gain insights into the opinions and feedbacks of its customers, which comprise both the UAE nationals and expatriates in the country.

The authority has been consistently upgrading and diversifying its online interactive channels over the years, whose number now stands at 14 and include Facebook, Google Plus, Instagram, Twitter and others.

Abulaziz Al Maamari, Director of Government and Social Communication at the Emirates ID, in a statement to media on February 14, said that the website of the authority offered customers an opportunity to directly communicate with it, seek a host of services and solve the problems they faced.

Al Maamari said while visitors from the UAE constituted the lion’s share of visits to the website last year with 3.49 million hits, the US followed with 34,982 hits, India with 24,322 hits, Saudi Arabia with 22,799 hits and the UK with 22,691 hits.

The requests for status update about registration and renewal applications constituted the most visited pages on the website, he revealed.

Citation
Haseeb Haider, ” It’s Urdu vs Malayalam for Eida third language,” in Khaleej Times, April 8, 2015. Accessed on April 8, 2015, at: http://www.khaleejtimes.com/kt-article-display-1.asp?section=nationgeneral&xfile=data/nationgeneral/2015/April/nationgeneral_April81.xml

Disclaimer
The item above written by Haseeb Haider and published in Khaleej Times on April 8, 2015, is catalogued here in full by Faiz-e-Zabaan for non-profit educational purpose only. Faiz-e-Zabaan neither claims the ownership nor the authorship of this item. The link to the original source accessed on April 8, 2015, is available here. Faiz-e-Zabaan is not responsible for the content of the external websites.

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