Change of working hours in Ramadan suggested

Updated 12 July 2014
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Change of working hours in Ramadan suggested

Public and private sector workers have called on the government to review working hours for Muslims in Ramadan to improve productivity, including looking at evening shifts.
They told Arab News that the review should take into account changes to routines and sleeping hours during the month of fasting.
They said there are poor services at many government offices during Ramadan, particularly during the first week when staff members are either absent or not doing their work.
Ali Hazaa, who works for a private company, said he finds it difficult to get used to the different work schedule in Ramadan and is unable to get to bed early. He said lack of sleep results in lethargy at work.
“It would be better for Ramadan to be a holiday for all employees so they can have enough time to fulfill religious obligations, or to have an evening shift so they can coordinate their work and prevent delays,” he said.
Saleh Al-Hamadi, a worker, said: “I think it would be better for working hours to change to the evening during Ramadan so that staff are not lazy and can do their work properly.”
Other workers, however, say that Ramadan does not affect their productivity. “I support the need for employees to work during Ramadan,” said Hassan Alqani. “But I think the work period should be reduced to two weeks during the month to allow individuals enough time to attend to their social and religious obligations, particularly during the last 10 days of Ramadan.”
He said workers are tired and absent from work mainly because they have to adjust to new routines, especially at the beginning of the month.
For Ahmed Eid, working in Ramadan is special because of the balance required for worship and working. “Undoubtedly, the productivity of employees declines during Ramadan for a number of health and biological reasons, but I think this is exacerbated by the later working hours in Ramadan, which starts at 10:00 a.m.,” he said. “Making working hours from 7:00 a.m. to 12 noon in my opinion would be much better in terms of regulating employees' time and productivity levels.”
Khaled Al-Zahrani said he prefers working during Ramadan and does not find it difficult. “I prefer working during the day in Ramadan because it is easier. There are fewer people at government departments during this time.”
Ahmed Asiri said something must be done to improve productivity at government departments. “We have a hard time at government departments in Ramadan because there are fewer employees.
This results in paperwork and procedures taking longer,” he said.


Trump slams rush to condemn Saudi Arabia over Jamal Khashoggi disappearance

Updated 17 October 2018
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Trump slams rush to condemn Saudi Arabia over Jamal Khashoggi disappearance

  • ‘I think we have to find out what happened first’
  • ‘Here we go again with, you know, you’re guilty until proven innocent. I don’t like that’

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump on Tuesday criticized rapidly mounting global condemnation of Saudi Arabia over the mystery of missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi, warning of a rush to judgment and echoing the Saudis’ request for patience.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Trump compared the case of Khashoggi to the allegations of sexual assault leveled against Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh during his confirmation hearing.

“I think we have to find out what happened first,” Trump said. “Here we go again with, you know, you’re guilty until proven innocent. I don’t like that. We just went through that with Justice Kavanaugh and he was innocent all the way as far as I’m concerned.”

The Oval Office interview came not long after Trump spoke Tuesday with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. He spoke by phone a day earlier with King Salman.

After speaking with the king, Trump floated the idea that “rogue killers” may have been responsible for the disappearance. The president told the AP on Tuesday that that description was informed by his “feeling” from his conversation with Salman and that the king did not use the term.

“It sounded to me, maybe these could have been rogue killers,” Trump said.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is now in Turkey and has met with President Recep Tayipp Erdogan after the senior US diplomat’s talks with King Salman and the crown prince in Riyadh on the case of Khashoggi.

Pompeo had a brief meeting with the king before a lengthy, 40-minute discussion with the crown prince.

“We are strong and old allies. We face our challenges together,” the crown prince said as he warmly welcomed Pompeo to the Saudi capital.

Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Adel Al-Jubeir also had talks with Pompeo. “The secretary and the foreign minister agreed on the importance of a thorough, transparent, and timely investigation,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said later.

Khashoggi, a Saudi citizen who lived in the US, disappeared on Oct. 2 after visiting the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul to complete paperwork related to his divorce. Saudi Arabia and Turkey have set up a joint team to investigate the disappearance.