25 January 2013

Gambia: State House Observes Maulud Nabi

Hundreds of Muslims from across the country Wednesday night gathered at the State House grounds in observance of the annual 'Gamo'- the birth of the Holy Prophet, Mohammad (SAW).

Hosted by the Gambian leader, His Excellency Sheikh Professor Alhaji Dr Yahya Jammeh, and members of the State House Mosque Committee, thealsoin attendancewas Her Excellency the vice president and minister of Women's Affairs,Aja Dr Isatou Njie-Saidy, the deputy speaker of the National Assembly, Hon Fatou Mbaye, Cabinet ministers, governors, other senior government officials, religious leaders, and a cross-section of the Gambian community.

Like in previous 'Gamos' at the State House, this year's event was characterised by the recitation of the Holy Qur'an, Islamic songs, locally known as "Zikarr" as well as preaching on different social topics such as women in Islam, the lifeof the Holy Prophet Muhammed (SAW), leadership and people's rights in Islam, the role of women in Islam in the face of modern challenges and the importance of Islam as a religion of peace.

In his welcoming remarks, Warrant Officer Alhagie Ba Sainey Camara, Amir of the State House Mosque Committee, thanked the dignitaries and religious leaders for responding to their invitation. He urged the Muslim Ummah to pray for the Gambian leader who is the main sponsor of the event, and other individuals for their contribution.

Amir Camara also used the opportunity to pay tribute to the late Alhaji Momodou Sanyang, former director general of the national broadcaster, and prayed to Allah to grant him eternal peace in paradise. He equally thanked the vice president and minister of Women's Affairs and the commanding officer, State Guards Battalion for their support.

Dr Njogu Bah, the secretary general and head of the Civil Service who is also the minister of Presidential Affairs, on behalf of President Jammeh, welcomed Muslims to this very important night of worship. He described 'Maulud Nabi' as a very important date on the Muslim calendar and further cited quotations in the Holy Qur'an that recognise the importance of the day. He then called for attitudinal change and challenged Muslims the world over to followthe footsteps of the Prophet (PBUH).

The 'Gamo' finally came to an end shortly before dawn prayers, but not until the worshippers had offered prayers for The Gambia, the president and the entire people of the country, for the continued prevalence of peace and stability.

Imam Sedia Ceesay, the Principal of Tallinding Islamic Institute, chaired the programme, which was characterised by Islamic songs by various 'Dairas' and recitations of the Holy Qur'an until dawn prayer.

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