From the news desk

Haram imam to attend Quran finals

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The esteemed imam of the Haram in Makkah, Sheikh Khalid bin Ali Al-Ghamdi, will be the main guest of honour at the finals of the South African National Quran Competition (SANQC) set to be held this coming weekend in Midrand. Born in Makkah in 1968, Al-Ghamdi was officially appointed as an imam of the Haram following the haj pilgrimage in 2008. He was formerly the head of the Islamic Department at the Umm Al-Qura University in the holy city. Al-Ghamdi also studied at Umm Al-Qura, making a name for himself as a specialist in the recitation of the Holy Quran.

Saturday will mark the 9th edition of the annual SANQC finals, with the regional rounds of the competition held during February and March this year. The regional rounds were held in all nine provinces, in three different categories, with the winners of each category qualifying for Saturday’s show-piece event. Competitors will take home in excess of R150 000 worth of prizes, with the winners being awarded the opportunity to participate in the King Abdul Azeez competition, which is held inside the Haram each year.

According to Mohammed Wadee, the national coordinator of the SANQC, Al-Ghamdi’s visit to the country would likely be a short one, due to his selection as one of the imams slated to lead the Taraweeh prayer at the Haram, during Ramadan. He is expected to deliver an address at the competition.

Aside from the SANQC finals, Al-Ghamdi will also deliver a khutbah and lead the Jumuah salah at the Nizamiye Turkish Masjid, in Midrand.

Other notable guests for Saturday’s event include Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor, as well as deputy-ministers Fatima Chohan and Enver Surtee. Surtee is also expected to deliver an address at the event.

VOC listeners can tune in to the SANQC finals live on air from 2:30pm until 4pm and 6pm until 9pm. VOC (Mubeen Banderker)

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