Buhari performs lesser hajj

Buhari performs lesser hajj
February 25 19:33 2016

By Alhassan Ismail Mustapha

[P]resident Muhammadu Buhari and members of his delegation  to the ongoing state visit to Saudi Arabia performed lesser hajj (umrah) in the holy land of Makkah on Thursday.

The President arrived Makkah via Jeddah from Madinah at about 1.20 a.m. (local time) on Thursday, where he had gone on Wednesday to visit and pray at the tomb of the Holy Prophet Muhammad and Caliphs, (Disciples) as part of the islamic religious rites.

He proceeded to the Holy Mosque, Ka’abah, for the performance of the Umrah. During the exercise, some of the same pilgrimage rites are performed.

The rites include, Tawaf (going round the Ka’aba) seven times) and Sa’i, (walking and running between the hills of Safa and Marwa) also seven ends up with two raka’at prayers and special supplications for God’s blessings.

The President  performed the ritual alongside the governor of Zamfara state, Abdulaziz Yari, Kashim Shettima of Borno, Rauf Aregbesola of Osun, Aminu Masari of Katsina and Sen. Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun state.

Others were the National Security Adviser,  Maj. Gen. Babagana Monguno (rtd), the Emir of Kano, Dr Muhammadu Sanusi II, Oba of Lagos, Alhaji Rilwan Akiolu, and foremost industrialists,  Alhaji Ismaila Isa Funtua and Wale Tinubu among others.

Gov Yari told journalists  that  the exercise was an indication of the commitment of the President towards the peace, progress and stability of the country.

‘The visit to Mecca and Madina is actually a  personal spiritual journey for the President and he used the opportunity to pray for the country and prayed for peace progress of more significance for the nation,’’

“Well as it is well known, Mecca is the holiest city in Islam and the Ka’aba is the holiest Mosque  and also the Mosque of the Prophet in Madina. So essentially Mr. President went to Madina this morning, visited the tomb of the Prophet and the Caliphs prayed in the Mosque and spent the whole day which is one of the most rewarding rites in Islam to visit the Prophet and pray at his tomb.

“And he  came and performed the Umrah, which is lesser hajj. The hajj is performed once a year, but Umrah can be performed anytime, and he is has just completed that”.

“He added, “I believe the President used the opportunity to pray for the country and prayed for peace progress of more significance for the nation, with the state visit to Riyadh itself and opportunity to discuss with the government of Saudi Arabia on areas of mutual interest, be it security, how to deal with the radicalization, has to do the price of oil which is affecting both our countries, hitting our reserves, affecting exchange rates and what the two countries can do to stabilize the price of oil and firm up the market,” he said.