Illiteracy rate drops to 3.21% in KSA

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Updated 07 September 2015
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Illiteracy rate drops to 3.21% in KSA

JEDDAH: Saudi Arabia will join the international community in celebrating International Literacy Day on Sunday, Sept. 8.

Undersecretary at the Ministry of Education, Abdul Rahman bin Mohammed Al-Barrak, said the Kingdom was able to successfully reduce the illiteracy rate from as high as 60 percent to 3.21 percent in 1435 AH (2014), due in large part to the support of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman and the efforts of Education Minister Azzam Al-Dakhil.
He said the Kingdom is still doing its best to achieve its goal of completely eliminating illiteracy.
Starting from the second semester of the current academic year 1436/1437 AH, he said a number of comprehensive activities will be launched as part of the Arab Decade Project endorsed by Arab leaders during the 2015 Arab Summit Conference in Sharm El-Sheikh to eradicate illiteracy.
As for the annual International Literacy Day celebrations, Al-Barrak said the event is a great occasion to exchange global and regional experiences and latest developments, as well as provide opportunities for coordination and mobilization of civil society groups to promote literacy, education and raise awareness.
He said all departments of education will hold different educational activities, and will include participation of specialists, community members and media organizations.


Saudi crown prince calls for establishing health center dedicated to Pakistani hero

Updated 37 min 17 sec ago
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Saudi crown prince calls for establishing health center dedicated to Pakistani hero

  • The directive was issued during the crown prince’s visit to Pakistan on the first leg of his Asia tour
  • Khan managed to save 14 lives, but he drowned as he attempted to rescue the 15th person.

DUBAI: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has called for the creation of a health center in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province dedicated to the memory of a Pakistani hero who saved 14 lives in Jeddah’s 2009 floods, Saudi state-news agency SPA reported.

The directive was issued during the crown prince’s visit to Pakistan on the first leg of his Asia tour.

In November 2009, as flash floods roared through the port city, Farman Ali Khan secured a rope to his waist and jumped into the water to rescue people.

He managed to save 14 lives, but he drowned as he attempted to rescue the 15th person.

He was posthumously awarded the King Abdul Aziz Medal of the First Order by the Saudi government and Pakistan’s Tamgha-e-Shujat by then President Asif Ali Zardari. 

“What this man displayed is a rare act of heroism,” said Rania Khaled, an account executive in Jeddah. “He didn’t pause to think of where these people came from or their nationality — all he cared about was that everyone survived the terrible flood. As a result, he lost his life and that’s what makes his tale so heroic. He cared for humanity, not just his own well-being and safety.
“He set a very high example of what a human should aspire to be. Your background, race and nationality shouldn’t matter; what matters is that we all stand together and help each other. I think if people lived with a similar mindset to that of Khan, the world would be a better place.”
Razan Sijjeeni, a photography instructor in Jeddah, said: “I think what Khan did was not only heroic but also human. It says a lot about the kind of person he was in that moment when he chose to risk his life to save others. He gives us a lot to reflect on — who we are today and how much we should value human lives that are not necessarily related to us.”
Nora Al-Rifai, who is training to be a life coach, said that she hopes Khan’s widow and three daughters continue to receive the help and support they deserve.
“It’s a nice gesture that a Jeddah street was named after him as a reminder to all of us and the next generations of his selflessness and heroism.”