President Muhammadu Buhari, in the course of the week, embarked on official and spiritual journey to Saudi Arabia to thank Almighty Allah as he prepares to handover mantle of leadership to President-elect, Sen. Bola Tinubu, on May 29.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that President Buhari departed Nigeria on Tuesday for Saudi Arabia on official visit from April 11 to 19.
An earlier statement issued in Abuja by Malam Garba Shehu, the President’s spokesman, said the journey would be Buhari’s last trip to the Kingdom as President.
The Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Prof. Isa Pantami and Malam Garba Shehu, the President’s spokesman, who spoke to newsmen on the significance of the President’s trip, said Buhari was in the Holy Land to thank Almighty Allah for the successful eight years in service of his country.
The president, who was accompanied by his aides, first visited Madinah where he toured some historic religious places, including the International Fair and Museum of the Prophet’s Biography and Islamic Civilisation in the city as part of his engagement in the Holy City.
While at the Museum, the president maintained that ”the spread of true knowledge of the religion of Islam is the most important task now facing global Muslims.”
He commended the Saudi government for deploying latest technological tools in presenting the core of Islam, its lofty purposes, and qualitative teachings.
According to the President, the Muslim community needs a system that is futuristic, bringing knowledge and education in a new system that will make for a good understanding of the very features of the religion.
Buhari observed the five daily prayers as well as Taraweeh prayer at the Masjid Nabawi before departing for Makkah via Jeddah, late on Wednesday, for the lesser pilgrimage.
The president, alongside his aides, some traditional rulers and religious leaders successfully performed Umrah rituals, amid tight security, upon his arrival at the Grand Mosque in Makkah.
The president, on April 11, saluted leading businessman and philanthropist, Aliko Dangote, as he marks his 66th birthday, wishing him a long, healthy life and a joyful year ahead.
“Hearty congratulations and best wishes to the illustrious businessman Aliko Dangote on his birthday.
”He has given new heights to Nigeria’s prestige and global reputation.
”May the Almighty give him the strength and wisdom to do even more for the nation,” he said.
President Buhari on Friday in Makkah, Saudi Arabia, visited elder statesman and patriarch of the Dantata family, Alhaji Aminu Dantata, in his hotel space to condole him over the demise of his wife, Hajiya Rabi Dantata.
NAN reports that the Kano-based businessman had on April 9 lost his wife, Hajiya Rabi Dantata, at a medical centre in Saudi Arabia.
President Buhari had earlier in a statement by his Spokesman, Malam Garba Shehu, expressed sadness over the demise of Rabi.
However, the Nigerian leader used the opportunity of the visit to once again condole with the Dantata family over the demise of Rabi Dantata.
The president said the deceased would be remembered for her unparalleled compassion and philanthropy.