By Our Reporter
The Mufti of Uganda, Sheikh Shaban Ramadhan Mubaje, yesterday flagged off the first batch of Uganda’s pilgrims to Mecca in the royal kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Addressing over to 30 pilgrims at the old Kampala-based Uganda Muslim Supreme Council(UMSC) headquarters, Mubaje congratulated them upon reaching their life moment to go for Haj rituals for the year 2022.
“You have cause to be thankful to the Almighty Allah for showering you with his divine blessings. You are among the chosen few in the country in the aftermath of two years when Muslims the world over couldn’t perform Haj due to the Covid-19 pandemic and many were unable to go due to many factors that include above the required age 65 as was set by the Saudi government, “said Mubaje.
Quoting several verses from Quran, Mubaje drew illustrations that admonish pilgrims that on this life journey to exercise total commitment, humility and carry physical provisions in form of reasonable finances but above all exercise piety and purify their souls
“Shortly after performing his only pilgrimage to Makkah prior to his demise, the Almighty God revealed to Prophet Muhammad Peace Be Upon Him that had completed his divine favors upon believers and chosen for them Islam as their religion. This demonstrates that performing Haj rituals leads someone to a high level of spiritual enrichment and growth in presence of the Lord and in the hereafter they will be rewarded with the highest level of paradise,” he said.
Mubaje advised the pilgrims never to waste their precious time and carry on with their lifestyle like they were before traveling for Haj but rather “intensify your devotion, by showing inner gratitude to God for his guidance, life, protection, bounties and praise him as you circumambulate the Holy Kaaba and tour various holy stations as you would be guided by your team leaders,”Mubaje emphasised.
He urged them to pray for their own well-being, their families, colleagues, and leaders both political and religious, and the country and beseech Allah to restore peace and sanity in the entire world.
Sheikh Ali Juma Shiwuyo, the UMSC Secretary for Haj said that a similar function had been organised in Iganga and Mbale for Pilgrims from Eastern Uganda.
He also disclosed that they had concluded the final arrangements including vaccination against yellow fever and conducted Covid-19 testing 72 hours prior to departure on June 30th, 2022.
Pilgrims were advised to utilize the rare opportunity to seek for pardon and prepare to physically see what they have learned for many years.