Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The ID Card saga begins here

I think most of us now know that 'professionals' have to register for the national ID card by the end of the year.

The other day Gulf News reported that a senior official from the Emirates Identity Authority complained that we, professionals, had not registered earlier.

On the recently published deadline he said: "It was not new but announced in May and everybody knew about it."

Everybody? I didn't.

I read several newspapers each day, I listen to the radio and I didn't know.

I also renewed my Residence Visa last month and no-one said a thing about an ID card.

I was aware that Emiratis have until December 31 to register, but until last week I did not know that the deadline also applied to expat professionals.

Even the recent announcement was confusing and unclear. As we've come to expect.

For example, exactly who are 'professionals'? The announcement talked about white collar workers and quite clearly specified degree holders.

There are many professional, white collar workers who are not degree holders. Does the deadline apply to them or not?

We are told that there are 28 registration centres. The nearest I've come to discovering where they are is to read of one in Karama and one in Al Barsha. Those are big suburbs, so where are they exactly? What are the phone numbers?

I've discovered that there's a website - only because reports the day after the announcement said it had crashed under the weight of traffic and was being expanded in the future.

A simple campaign giving basic information would be nice. Stuff like exactly who has to register, by when, where and how, the process required, contact numbers and addresses.

It isn't hard to do something as simple as that, yet it never happens.

Changes to rules are made, vague and confusing announcements are put out, the next day they're 'explained' or changed. Think of the recent new visa rules, the 'one villa one family' campaign. Exactly the same problem. The only information we're given is unclear, incomplete, confusing...and then it's changed.

On and off over the past few days I've been trying to get into the website, with no success.

I'm going to try again now, and throughout the rest of the day if necessary.

Wish me luck. I'll keep you posted.


ZeTallGerman said...

seabee, the whole thing is once again CHAOS, as with every new law or regulation in Dubai. Nothing is ever thought through in a logical manner. Nobody ever asks themselves "How can we make this as hassle-free and quick as possible?" And in an article in today's 7 Days newspaper, the sheer arrogance and age-old government behaviour of "what'cha gonna do? This is our country (*insert evil chuckle here*)" just made my blood boil. Thamer Rashed Al Qasemi, planning director of the EIDA said: *We said in our advertisements not to leave it to the last minute.* However, while he said adverts had been carried in Arabic newspapers, he was unable to confirm that any were published in English-language newspapers. *Arabic is the official language of the UAE,* he added.

Well, %*&*$* you too, Mr Al Qasemi! The next time you visit the German consulate to apply for a Shengen visa, maybe we should keep all the forms in German because guess what? It's our official language.

dave said...

And what if you have a degree but it was not attested.

Subsequently your labour contract may state you as a non-professional occupation such as administrative assistant. Do you need the ID card by 31st December?

ZeTallGerman said...

I've just seen the small paper slip you need to fill-out with "mandatory information". It asks for your full name and details, your mother's name, and your grandfather's name. Now, which grandfather do they mean? Mother's side of Father's side? Can I choose?

Seabee said...

And do they want first name or last name of grandpappa?

They don't make it easy!