FaceOf: Hisham Siraj Hammami, chief information officer of the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah

Hajj and Umrah Ministry's chief information officer Hisham Siraj Hammami
Updated 26 August 2018
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FaceOf: Hisham Siraj Hammami, chief information officer of the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah

Hisham Siraj Hammami is the current chief information officer (CIO) in the information technology department of the Ministry of Hajj and Umrah. He is also a senior adviser to the minister of Hajj and Umrah. 

Hammami is responsible for upgrading and updating the organization’s data centers and networks. 

He also works on completely automating all business processes, and building the E-government strategic plan, and managing and reorganizing the IT (information technology)department.

Before taking up that position, Hammami served as IT  security manager at Banaja Holdings. 

Hammami has expertise in network design, implementation, administration, and security, project management, and computer forensics. 

He is also a qualified Cyberoam-certified network and security professional as well as an optika imaging system certified technician.

Hammami has participated in many global technology events, conferences and forums in Saudi Arabia and abroad related to digital transformation, and technology solutions and innovations. 

The Ministry of Hajj and Umrah’s information technology department is providing technical solutions to help pilgrims during their stay in Makkah.

Hammami told Arab News that all internal data center and communications infrastructure serving pilgrims from within the Kingdom were upgraded this year. 

He said that customers had the chance to evaluate the packages earlier this year and the reservation process for obtaining Hajj permits have been eased. 

An updated version of the Manasikana application to help pilgrims and visitors was launched this year. It supports eight languages.

 


Innovative Saudi cultural center showcases world-famous ‘The Scream’ artist’s exhibition

Updated 26 June 2019
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Innovative Saudi cultural center showcases world-famous ‘The Scream’ artist’s exhibition

  • 40 works by Edvard Munch go on display for first time in Middle East

DHAHRAN: A dynamic Saudi cultural center is to showcase the works of one of the world’s most famous painters in an exhibition-first for the Middle East.

Forty pieces by Norwegian artist Edvard Munch, best known for his iconic “The Scream” painting, will go on public display at the King Abdul Aziz Center for World Culture (Ithra).

The special exhibition, titled “Landscapes of the Soul,” is the latest in a series of high-profile cultural events to be staged at the showpiece exhibition in Dhahran.

Developed by Saudi Aramco with the aim of stimulating knowledge, creativity and cross-cultural engagement, Ithra’s theater, museum, exhibition hall and art gallery complex forms a key part of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030 reform plan to promote culture and entertainment.

The Munch exhibition, which runs until Sept. 3, portrays the artist’s personal life experiences of misery, love, despair, loneliness and reflections of the soul, through his distinctive works.

“It is such an honor to host and introduce to Saudi Arabia, and indeed, the Middle East, the work of the world-renowned artist Edvard Munch,” Rania Biltagi, Ithra’s head of communications and partnership, told Arab News.

Munch’s (1863-1944) original exhibition has been located in Oslo, Norway since 1963, and the Saudi display is being staged in Ithra’s Great Hall in partnership with the Munch Museum in Norway.

As well as a lithograph version of his most famous painting “The Scream,” other works on show will include “Summer Night. The Voice,” 1894, “Self-Portrait,” 1895, and “The Sick Child,” 1896.

“A moment that stood out from the opening was when speaking to a couple visiting the exhibit, they mentioned that they were Norwegian and working in Saudi,” Biltagi said. “They explained that they had never had the chance to visit the Munch Museum in their homeland and what an unexpected pleasure it was to be able to see Munch’s work in Saudi.”

Biltagi added that the event epitomized the aim of Ithra in providing a platform to bring together cultures as well as people.

The center, featured in Time magazine’s list of the world’s top 100 places to visit, is a pioneer on the Kingdom’s culture and arts scene, organizing a variety of events, performances, programs and experiences to suit all ages and backgrounds. Previous exhibitions have included a focus on Saudi contemporary art, Leonardo da Vinci, and installations symbolizing creativity and innovation.