By Maarufu Mohamed
Kenyaâs Chief Khadi Sheikh Sharif Al Muhdhar has declared that Saturday will mark the start of the holy month of Ramadhan.
During the period, Muslims devote themselves to a dawn-to-dusk fasting, prayers and good deeds.
The Chief Kadhi led a moon sighting committee comprising of top leading Muslim Scholars on Thursday.
âAfter the new moon has not been sighted this evening, the holy month of Ramdhan should start on Saturday,â said Muhdhar.
Muslims in the Country continue to remain divided over the different starting dates for the holy month, which is usually calculated based on the sighting of a new moon.
On Friday, a section of Muslims in Mombasa, Nairobi and other parts of the Country begun fasting despite the Khadiâs announcement that the moon was not sighted on Thursday evening and that fasting should start Saturday.
The Chief Kadhi, however, said that various opinions in the sightings of the moon should not divide Muslims and urged them to use the opportunity in the holy month on spiritual reflection, prayers, doing good deeds and spending time with family and friends.
â Muslims brothers and sisters should also consider the less fortunate members in our society and assist them as much as possible,â said Khadi.
He said this was the only opportunity for Muslims to develop one's qualities of endurance and self-restraint, and also control their anger, fiery and malicious tongue against anybody and seek unity and forgiveness with anybody.
Masoud Msellem of the â Hizb Ut-Tahrir of East Africa noted in a statement appealed to wealthy Muslims to assist the poor during the holy month.
During the month, Muslims are expected to abstain during daylight hours from food, drink, smoking and sex to focus on spirituality, good deeds and charity.