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It's party time for Muslim faithful

BUSIA
By | November 16th 2010

By ALLY JAMAH

Millions of Muslim faithful celebrate Eid-ul-Adha, to mark the end of the pilgrimage rituals in Mecca, with special prayers, feasting and family gatherings today.

Faithful countrywide will gather in hundreds in open fields and mosques for prayers and later in the day engage in various forms of merrymaking.

The Imam of Jamia Mosque in Nairobi Sheikh Muhammad Swalihu urged well-to-do faithful to invite financially disadvantaged colleagues and other Kenyans to share in the celebrations.

"The emphasis of this Eid is slaughtering animals. No one should miss the opportunity when in a position to do so," he advised.

Season Messages

Eid-ul-Adha is usually marked to coincide with the end of pilgrimage rituals in Mecca.

About 3,000 Kenyans, including Sarah Obama, the grandmother of US President Barack Obama, are in Mecca for the hajj, which is an obligation for all healthy and wealthy faithful. King Abdalla bin Abdul Aziz invited Sarah and five other members of her family to Saudi Arabia as his special guests.

Text messages and phone calls full of the season greetings were alive among the Muslim community by yesterday as families and friends reconnected for the festivity. There were also postings on social network sites including the Facebook and Twitter.

Acting Chief Kadhi Ahmad Muhdhar send congratulatory messages to Muslims and other Kenyans.

"We call upon Muslims to celebrate Eid by sharing food with the indigent, visit the sick and reconnect with family members. It should not just be spent eating and drinking alone," he said.

Spirit of celebration

Imam of Masjid Tawhid in Bungoma Abdulmalik Kipsang’ urged Muslims to avoid celebrating Eid through casual sex, saying the religious spirit of the day should be maintained.

Meanwhile, Co-convenor of the Muslim Human Rights Forum Farouk Machanje has urged the Government to return Kenyan bomb suspects being held in Uganda, in the spirit of the celebrations.

Thirteen of 38 suspects of the July 11 bomb attacks in Kampala, which left more than 70 people dead are Kenyans. Others are Ugandans and Somalis who were charged with terrorism over the twin suicide bombs.

"If the suspects have committed any crime, the due process of law should take its course. Even the High Court has ruled the renditions to be illegal," said Machanje.

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