Address of Her Excellency Dr Rawya Saud Al Busaidi
Minister of Higher Education, Sultanate of Oman On the Occasion of the inauguration of the The Sultan Qaboos Academic Fellowships Stonetown, Zanzibar 06 February 2013
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم الحمد لله والصلاة والسلام على معلم البشرية سيدنا محمد خاتم الأنبياء والمرسلين وعلى آلـــه وصحبه أجمعين
Your Excellency, Ali Juma Shamhuna, Minister of Education;
Vocational Training, Chairman of the University, the Honourable Hassan Nassor Moyo,
Vice Chancellor, Professor Idris Rai,
Excellencies; Distinguished Guests;
Ladies and Gentlemen,
السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته
It is my great honour to be here in Zanzibar on behalf of the Government of the Sultanate of Oman to inaugurate this historic Academic Fellowship program bearing the name of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said, whose gracious wish was to establish an endowment at the State University of Zanzibar (SUZA) in support of its on-going pursuit of higher learning.
Oman’s wider mission is to enrich cultural exchange, fostering constructive relations among civilisations and developing enduring ties of friendship and collaboration around the globe.
With a long tradition of scholarship and learning, valued as a free, independent and progressive contribution to world culture, and with an enduring history of cooperative relations with Africa, Asia, Europe and America, the Sultanate of Oman recognises that it has a unique role to play in the complex historical and cultural relationships among all nations.
Conscious of this responsibility, the Sultanate encourages and supports scholarly study and scientific research, seeking worthy opportunities to enhance global cultural heritage for the benefit of all peoples and their heirs.
In enacting this noble aim, His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said has made significant endowments to advance higher education in many different countries of the world.
In view of the long history of friendly relations between Oman and Zanzibar, rooted in trade, mutual respect and cultural exchange spanning several centuries, it is indeed fitting that Zanzibar will henceforward be an integral part of His Majesty’s great initiative to encourage cooperation among nations.
With this endowment, the Sultanate desires especially to honour the leadership of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said, in contributing to the enrichment of knowledge across the globe.
I am pleased that the Government of the Republic of Tanzania, the Government of Zanzibar, and the State University of Zanzibar also consider the establishment of this Fellowship program a fitting testimony.
In endowing these Fellowships, the Sultanate of Oman wishes to contribute to the goals of the State University of Zanzibar in furthering the depth and breadth of education across the range of programs necessary to advance economic development.
This initiative began with a request from the Government of Zanzibar, on behalf of the State University of Zanzibar, to establish an Academic Chair in the name of His Majesty Sultan Qaboos.
After due consideration, it was determined that, as a first step at this stage in its development, the State University of Zanzibar would benefit from assistance with human resource capacity-building in various academic and technical areas, management and finance.
The Fellowship program will also include Train-the-Trainer courses in Education, Health, Environment, Infrastructure and Entrepreneurship - aimed at strengthening SUZA’s capacity to contribute to the sustainable development, stability and economic prosperity of Zanzibar.
To develop and implement the Sultan Qaboos Academic Fellowship program (SQAF), a Joint Committee has been established with three members from Zanzibar and three members from Oman.
This Joint Committee is entrusted with a task of great value, for Education is of utmost importance.
According to the wisdom of the Prophet Mohammed (SAW), we should: ‘Seek knowledge from the cradle to the grave, and go in quest of knowledge, even unto China’. The Holy Prophet exhorted us to spend more time in learning and to spread knowledge. These messages have even greater impact today, as the vital role of education in nation-building is recognised by all countries, whether large or small, whether developing or mature, wealthy or struggling.
We increasingly realise that there is no greater gift than education – for it is everyone’s lifeline to the future. Unquestionably, Education is at the heart of the values that make our civilizations worthy of perpetuation. And so, each of these scholarships, and each Zanzibari who is empowered through them, is intended to stand as a beacon of light, symbolising the enduring amity, collaboration and partnership between the Sultanate of Oman, the Government of Zanzibar, and the State University of Zanzibar.
I would like to express my appreciation and thanks to the Government of Zanzibar, represented by the Ministry of Education; Vocational Training, and to the State University of Zanzibar for making the arrangements for this ground-breaking event.
All those in Oman who have been involved in this endeavour have found it a privilege to work with you to help realise the worthy goals of His Majesty in establishing this important program.
In ending, I would like to emphasize that this endowment is emblematic of the centuries-old tradition of friendly relations between Oman and Zanzibar which continue to this day, and will endure as long as the earth revolves around the sun.
May the monsoon winds that once brought sailing ships to and from this beautiful Island long continue to blow over the oceans and connect the shores of Oman with those of Zanzibar. -
THANK YOU -
والسلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته،،،