104 year old hajiyah now an official guest

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Cii Radio| Ayesha Ismail| 29 August 2017| 07 Zhul Hijjah 1438

Mariah Marghani Mohammad, the 104-year-old woman from Indonesia performing Haj this year, is being hosted by the Ministry of Culture and Information to ensure the highest levels of comfort and special care throughout her stay.

Awad Bin Saleh Al Awad, the minister, gave instructions to include Mariah, the oldest among the 221,000 Indonesian would-be pilgrims this year, in the list of guests hosted by the ministry, Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.

Mariah initially declined the offer, saying that she wanted to stay with her neighbours, a couple, who had promised to look after her and to help her throughout the Haj rituals in and near Makkah and until their return home in Indonesia.

She said that she could not move away from them following their generous dedication to assist her and their commendable attitudes in treating her like their own mother.

The minister, noting her gratitude, ordered that the couple should also be included in the guest programme and ensure that the three neighbours stayed together.

Mariah was last week welcomed with great fanfare upon landing in the airport of the Red Sea city of Jeddah, 70km from Makkah.

Mohammad Hery Saripudin, Indonesia’s Consul General in Jeddah, said that Mariah was in good health and that she would be able to perform the rituals. Around one million Muslims willing to perform Haj are wait-listed in Malaysia, the world’s most populous Muslim country with approximately 202.9 million identifying themselves as Muslims. The figure represented 87.2 per cent of the total population in 2011.

Haj will this year start on August 30 with the gathering of the more than two million pilgrims at the tent city of Mina in the outskirts of Makkah. The ascent on Mount Arafat, also near Makkah, will be on August 31 and Eid Al Adha, the Feast of the Sacrifice, will be celebrated by Muslims across the world on September 1.

Source – Gulf news