Dramatic rise in Umrah arrivals

Updated 01 March 2013
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Dramatic rise in Umrah arrivals

The number of Umrah pilgrims who arrived in the Kingdom during the past three months reached more than 1.6 million, Haj Minister Dr. Bandar Hajjar said yesterday.
“We expect the arrival of a record number of Umrah pilgrims during this Ramadan,” the minister said, adding that the total number of Umrah pilgrims this year would exceed six million.
He said all government departments are working together to provide the necessary services to pilgrims. “We expect an increase of 500,000 pilgrims during this Umrah season compared to last year.”
He said the number of Umrah pilgrims increases by 10 to 20 percent every year.
Hajjar said the ministry arranged meetings with representatives of Haj missions in more than 70 countries to make early preparations for the upcoming Haj season. “These meetings are aimed at helping these Haj missions organize their pilgrims by educating them on Haj rituals,” the ministers said.
Egypt, Pakistan and Algeria were expected to send the highest number of pilgrims, according to figures given by Saudi missions abroad. The minister said the expansion of mataf (the circumambulation area around the Holy Kaaba) would not affect pilgrims as Saudi authorities have made arrangements to ensure their convenience.
Hajjar said the electronic track system for Umrah was working well. “Our officials will inspect the services being provided to pilgrims by various companies and take action against negligent operators,” he added.


Future leaders key to achieve ‘Vision 2030’

Updated 30 min 14 sec ago
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Future leaders key to achieve ‘Vision 2030’

JEDDAH: Saudi Minister of Civil Service and Chairman of the Institute of Public Administration Sulaiman Al-Hamdan inaugurated the “Developing Future Leaders” roundtable on Wednesday. 

“The Kingdom achieved a distinguished civilizational status due to the wise developmental policies adopted by King Salman’s government as part of its engagement to move forward and achieve more successes and allow the Kingdom to assume its proper regional and international position,” Al-Hamdan said.

“I hope this event will reflect positively on the Kingdom’s administrative development process through the achievement of its objectives,” he said, noting that “the Kingdom’s strategic approach and ambitious vision pose an unprecedented challenge to the civil service system on various levels.”

“The ministry sought to provide an integrated human resources management system by empowering government agencies to effectively play their developmental roles. It did so through a series of directives such as reviewing and developing the executive regulations of the civil service system.”

Dr. Mushabab Al-Qahtani, the institute’s director general, noted that “preparing a second generation of leaders will greatly contribute to the achievement of the Kingdom’s vision.” 

“The subjects of this event aim at highlighting the importance of developing future leaders while discussing the latest means to do so and the role of current leaders in the process,” he said.

“The Kingdom, with the directives of its wise leadership, drew a road map leading to the future national development. It accorded great attention to building and developing human capital,” he added, pointing out that “King Salman’s government greatly focused on administrative and human capital development. This stresses its keenness to develop future leaders through diverse projects, plans and initiatives in order to achieve a sustainable development.”