‘Digital Eidiya’ adds joy to social distancing in UAE

A list of 23 apps for banks operating in the country and 10 apps for electronic wallets is suggested
Saturday 23/05/2020
Digital Eidiya
Digital Eidiya

ABU DHABI--In compliance with restrictions aimed at stemming the spread of the coronavirus, UAE residents have been advised to go digital this year and use apps to perform some of the traditional practices of Eid Al Fitr.

The UAE Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) launched 33 applications to share Eid greetings and cash gifts (Eidiya) remotely, as a precautionary measure against the spread of Covid-19.

According to tradition, children receive from parents toys and cash gifts during the Eid.

TRA has published on its website a list of 23 apps for banks operating in the country, in addition to 10 apps for electronic wallets through which Eidiya can be transferred, under the titles of: “Greet them from a distance and share the joy of the holiday”, and: “Because we care, digital Eidiya”.

TRA launched as well a large-scale media campaign entitled “You are responsible”. The campaign aims at enhancing commitment to precautionary and preventive measures and measures, and urging the public, citizens and residents, to adhere strictly to the instructions during the Eid Al-Fitr period and the next stage, to preserve the gains and achievements made by the UAE since the crisis of Coronavirus.

While people usually look forward to meeting family during the Eid, this year UAE government spokesperson Amna Al Shamsi urged people to stay away from big gatherings, celebrate Eid virtually and avoid visiting families.

“Avoid giving Eidia to kids… Not even the money from ATMs. Use electronic means instead”, she said noting that “malls could operate from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. during Eid with shoppers allowed to be there for a maximum of two hours”.

The promotion of electronic money transfer comes after  studies indicated infections may spread via exchange of banknotes, TRA said.

UAE’s authorities announced an updated set of penalties for violation of containment measures, including a fine of 50,000 dirhams ($13,000) for not heeding quarantine orders and 3,000 dirhams for not wearing a face mask or practicing physical distancing in public, or breaking curfew.

The UAE has conducted over 50,000 additional COVID-19 tests in line with the Ministry of Health and Prevention’s plans to intensify virus screening in order to contain the spread of COVID-19, according to WAM.

The accelerated investigative measures resulted in the detection of 994 new Coronavirus cases among various nationalities, all of whom are in a stable condition and receiving the necessary care, taking the total number of infections in the country to 27,892, according to a Ministry of Health statement on Saturday.

The total number of deaths has now reached 241, WAM said.

The Ministry also announced the full recovery of another 1,043 cases after receiving the necessary medical treatment, taking the total number of those recovered from the virus in the UAE to 13,798.