Matiang'i declares Public Holiday on Tuesday

Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang'i has announced a public holiday on July 20, 2021.

CS Fred Matiang'i

In a gazette notice published on Friday, July 16, 2021, CS Matiang'i said the public holiday was meant to mark Idd-Ul-Adha.

"It is notified for the general information of the public that in exercise of the powers conferred by section 2 (2) , as read with section 3 of the Public Holidays Act, the Cabinet Secretary for Interior and Co-ordination of National Government declares that Tuesday, 20th July, 2021 shall be a public holiday to mark Idd-Ul-Adha, 2021," read the gazette notice.

Idd-ul-Adha is an Islamic festival to commemorate the willingness of Abraham to follow Allah’s command to sacrifice his son.

It also marks the end of Hajj, the annual Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca. It is one of the two Idd celebrations, Idd-ul-Adha and Idd-ul-Fitr, and is often considered the holier of the two.

The journey to Mecca is mandatory for all faithfuls at least once in one's lifetime as long as one is able to do so.

However, Saudi Arabia has for a second consecutive year confined the annual hajj to a limited number of residents, excluding the millions of foreigners who usually flock to Mecca for the rite.

The hajj is widely seen as the high point in Muslim religious life, bringing the faithful together with millions of fellow believers to fulfil a spiritual obligation at Islam's holiest sites.

While the well-heeled can do the hajj in style, lodging at luxury hotels in Mecca, in poor countries the faithful wait for years and make heavy sacrifices to become one of some 2.5 million pilgrims who take part in a normal year.

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