KUALA LUMPUR: The Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah today joined a congregation of almost 1,000 people at Istana Negara’s Main Surau here in performing ‘Solat Istisqa’ (prayer for rain) to ease the worsening haze that has affected several parts of the country.
The special prayer, led by Mufti of Federal Territories Datuk Seri Dr Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri, was held after the usual Friday prayer,
Also present were Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu, Armed Forces chief General Tan Sri Zulkifli Zainal Abidin and Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador.
All mosques across the country have been called to hold the special prayer today.
The forest fires in Sumatra and Kalimantan had caused transboundary haze and impacted the air quality and increased air pollution index (API) readings in several states in the peninsula as well as Sabah and Sarawak.
As of 3pm, air quality in the Sri Aman area of Sarawak had remained in the dangerous category with an API reading of 411.
Earlier, Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) Integrity and Standard Compliance Department assistant director (Religious) ACP Ghazali Daud read the special sermon in conjunction with the Warrior’s Day celebration this month before leading the Friday prayer.
The celebration of Warrior’s Day, which is held annually on July 31, was first rescheduled to make way for several events in conjunction with the installation ceremony of Al-Sultan Abdullah as Malaysia’s 16th Yang di-Pertuan Agong on July 30 and was postponed again due to haze.
Al-Sultan Abdullah who was clad in peach-coloured Baju Melayu arrived at the Surau at 1.10pm, accompanied by his two sons, Tengku Muhammad Iskandar Ri’ayatuddin Shah and Tengku Ahmad Ismail Mu’adzam Shah.
The Friday prayer was aired live on RTM1. — Bernama