JEDDAH: A Malaysian studying at King Abdul Aziz University here was selected as the mutawif (guide) for Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and his delegation in performing the umrah on Wednesday (March 22).
Mohamad Zarid Misbari, 25, who hails from Bera in Pahang, is pursuing a four-year syariah programme under the sponsorship of the Saudi government.
"I have been a mutawif for umrah pilgrims for about two years now, but this time the pilgrims are of a different level," he said, describing the experience as valuable.
Mohamad Zarid was appointed as the mutawif for the Prime Minister’s delegation by the Malaysian Consulate here.
Anwar, accompanied by his wife Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Foreign Minister Datuk Seri Zambry Abdul Kadir and Communications and Digital Minister Fahmi Fadzil, arrived at the King Abdulaziz International Airport at 6.40am local time to start his three-day official visit to the kingdom.
The delegation then proceeded to Mecca to perform the umrah, completing the worship at about 11am local time.
Anwar is expected to receive a courtesy call from Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) secretary-general Hissein Brahim Taha and Muslim World League (MWL) secretary-general Sheikh Dr Mohammad bin Abdulkarim Al-Issa later.
The Prime Minister is also scheduled to perform terawih prayers on the first night of Ramadan at Masjidil Haram (the Grand Mosque) in Mecca.
Anwar is expected to have audiences with King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud and Crown Prince Mohammed Salman Abdulaziz Al-Saud who is also the Prime Minister of Saudi Arabia at the Al Salam Palace. – Bernama