(MENAFN- Khaleej Times) A 22-year-old Emirati contestant stole the show and bagged the first prize at the Tanzania International Holy Quran Award, beating 23 Quran memorisers from around the world.
Rashid Ali Khalfan bin Khalaf Al Naqbi, who bagged the US$5,000 prize (Dh18,000 approximately), impressed with his perfect memorisation and beautiful reciation of the Quran, getting him the highest score in the global competition. The Dubai International Holy Quran Award (DIHQA) had nominated Al Naqbi thanks to his exceptional past performance, including his win in a grand Quran contest on the Malayalam TV channel Darshana. Ibrahim Mohammed Bu Melha, head of the DIHQA organising committee and Adviser to the Ruler of Dubai for Cultural and Humanitarian Affairs, said no effort is spared to discover, encourage, sponsor and train Emirati Quran memorisers of all ages. These efforts helped the 14-category Award attracts local Quran memorisers who score remarkably well at the international Holy Quran competitions, and make the UAE proud. Dedicating Al Naqbi''s achievement to UAE leaders who support Quran memorisation and recitation, Bu Melha said that it was once difficult to nominate an Emirati Quran memoriser - male or female - for international Quran awards. This is not the case anymore as we have now an extensive database of Emirati full Quran memorisers who go through intensive training under the pioneering ''UAE National Memoriser'' programme," Bu Melha revealed. "This is line with the tireless support and sincere commitment of His Highness Shaikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, main supporter and sponsor of the 20-year-old global Award." The DIHQA Contest Unit has qualified and nominated a number of male and female Emirati Quran memorisers to many international Quran awards this year, Prof. Alolama noted. Ahmed Shaaban Master''s degree in Mass Media with 19 year experience in media and translation