UAE’s Al Dhafra Festival to begin in November amid strict COVID-19 precautions

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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Al Dhafra Festival
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Under the support of His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, the 14th edition of Al Dhafra Festival, will be conducted from November 5, 2020, to January 29, 2021.

The Cultural Programmes and Heritage Festivals Committee in Abu Dhabi will host the Al Dhafra Festival, known as the biggest showcase of Bedouin lifestyle, in Madinat Zayed, Dhafra Region of the Emirate.

The committee assured that the safety and well-being of the guests as well as the participants will be in their prime objective and all the preventive and precautionary actions will be taken against COVID-19 by linking with relevant authorities.

The Chairman of the Committee, Major General Fares Al Mazrouei, stated that the inheritance of the UAE’s Founding Father, the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, in conserving the country’s culture, legacy, identity and integrating native values are pointed out through the traditional, folkloric and handicraft events at the Al Dhafra Festival.

Eisa Saif Al Mazrouei, the Vice Chairman of the committee, said that the event in this unusual year’s season will be limited to competitions including camel beauty contests that are for the Asayel (pedigree) and Majaheem (dark-skinned) category, falconry tournament, Arabian Saluki race of 2500 meters, Arabian horse race, sheep beauty contest and shooting competition.

This year’s festival will not include traditional souq (market) to ensure the public, participants and workers’ safety in light of the situation of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mr. Al Mazrouei stated that as part of the protective measures the race tracks and competition sites will be sanitized daily while all the workers, judges and participants of the festival are expected to be negative in the COVID-19 test, wear face masks and gloves and maintain proper social distancing.