Ramadan: Nigeria, Saudi, others begin fasting Thursday

Ramadan: Nigeria, Saudi, others begin fasting Thursday

Muslims in Nigeria are likely to start the annual Ramadan fasting on Thursday.

Although the moon which marks the beginning of the month of Ramadan has not been sighted, Shaaban which precedes it ends on Wednesday.

It is therefore natural that once the month of Shaaban ends, the month of Ramadan begins, hence the commencement of fasting.

Already, Saudi Arabia has announced that fasting will begin on Thursday across the globe.

The announcement was made through the official Saudi news agency SPA on Tuesday.

It said that the new moon of Ramadan was not spotted on Tuesday evening and Wednesday will mark the last day of the Islamic month of Shaaban, SPA said, citing religious authorities in the kingdom.

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Egypt’s Mufti, the country’s top religious authority, said in a televised speech that the holy month will start on Thursday in the most populous Arab country.

Also, the United Arab Emirates, Jordan and Iraq’s Sunni Muslim minority also announced that the holy month of Ramadan will start on Thursday.

During Ramadan, Muslims have to abstain from eating, drinking and smoking from dawn to sunset.

Devout Muslims also mark the month by intense worship, performing special nightly prayers and reading Islam’s holy book, the Koran.

Fasting is one of Islam’s five pillars, alongside declaration of monotheism, prayer five times a day, alms-giving, and the pilgrimage to Mecca in Saudi Arabia.

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