The Ambassador of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Mr Meshal Alrogi, has reiterated his country’s commitment to offering scholarships to eligible Ghanaian students to further their education at the universities in that country.
The Ambassador announced this at an international conference, organised by the Islamic Council for Development and Humanitarian Services (ICODEHS) under the theme: “The Contribution of Arabic language to the development of African civilisation,” in Accra.
It is recalled that the Embassy of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, has in 2021 announced, through the Ghana Scholarship Secretariat, that the government of Saudi Arabia would increase the annual scholarship opportunities to Ghanaian students to 159.
Ambassador Alrogi indicated that the revelation of the Glorious Qur’an in the Arabic language, set the tone for the unity of purpose of all adherents of Islam from all parts of the World.
The Arabic language, according to the Saudi Ambassador, was a pillar of cultural diversity of humanity, adding that “It is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world, spoken in all parts of Africa, including Ghana.”
He said “For centuries, Arabic language was the common ground, the connector that reflected the richness of human existence and provided access to numerous resources. The assertion that Arabic language has impacted Africa’s civilisation cannot be disputed”.
Mr Alrogi said “the three most important learning centres in the Golden Ages of Islam were located in Africa: Timbuktu, Qairawan and Azhar. Some sources such as UNESCO cite al-Qairawaan as the oldest university, or oldest continually operating higher learning institution in the world.”
He said Arabian scholars were administrators of the old Ghana kingdoms, adding that the natives of West Africa who studied Arabic served in various positions in many palaces of African Kings as scribes, medical doctors and teachers.
Mr Alrogi said research showed that the Ashanti army, which invaded the Fante State in 1807, had “an Arab medical staff” with the responsibility for recording casualties and attending to the wounded.
This “Arab medical staff” were Muslim scholars, who were of West African ethnic backgrounds, who could speak Arabic.
Dr Abdul Samad Abdallah, senior lecturer and the convener of Arabic and Islamic studies in the Asia Institute of the University of Melbourne, Australia, indicated that the Arabic language had been an integral part of African civilisations from time immemorial.
By Times Reporter
This, according to him stemmed from the longstanding trade and diplomatic relationship between Arabs and some African societies.
Present at the event, were the Moroccan Ambassador to Ghana, Iamane Ouaadil; former General Consul of Ghana to the Kingdom Arabia, Sheikh Mubarak Ahmad Abdallah, Muhammadu Ousman Manaf, the Administrator of the Ghana Hajj Board; Sheikh Armiyaw Jibreel, Founder of Al Huda organisation and Sheikh Mustapha Ibrahim, Chairman of ICODEHS.
BY TIMES REPORTER