Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
The Presidency has said President Muhammadu Buhari on Friday, observed Juma’at prayer at the Grand Mosque in Makkah with other Heads of State and Government already in the Holy City for the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, (OIC) Summit.
Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, in a statement said Buhari would join other world leaders at the 14th session of the Summit Conference of the OIC hosted by Custodian of the two holy mosques, King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud at the conference which will commence at midnight.
The statement said that shortly after his arrival in Makkah on Thursday evening, President Buhari, accompanied by the governors of Osun, Niger and Jigawa performed the Umrah.
“The president and the accompanying delegation circumambulated the Ka’aba before visiting the area between the al-Marwah and al-Safa hills, itself a distance of between three and four kilometres in the Grand Mosque, which is part of the Umrah process,” the presidency said in statement.
The Umrah is a Muslim pilgrimage to Mecca that can be undertaken at any time of the year, unlike the Hajj which has a fixed time.
It is called the lesser pilgrimage, whereas the Hajj is the “major” pilgrimage which is compulsory for every able-bodied Muslim who can afford it. The Umrah is optional but recommended.