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Dabiri-Erewa applauds Nigerian scholar for winning Arabic Language competition in Saudi Arabia

Razaq Bamidele

 Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman/CEO 
Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) has applauded a Nigerian Scholar and multi lingual expert, Dr. Ahmad Rufa’i for winning  an international Arabic poetry competition in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Dabiri-Erewa gave the commendation in a statement by NIDCOM Head of 
Media and Public Relations, Abdur-Rahman Balogun, on Friday in Abuja.

She said that the defeat of other contestants,especially from Arabic 
speaking countries in Saudi Arabia by Dr Rufa’i was legendary.

“With your winning this all important competition over other contestants 
in an Arab speaking country, is a thing of joy and pride to us in 

“I congratulate you on this wonderful feat, for bringing honour and 
glory, not only to your family but to Nigeria as a whole. I say to you: 
“Baraka lahu feeh, Mabruk”.

“ I only hope and pray that your winning this competition has gone a 
long way in rewriting the negative narrative tag on Nigerians living in 
Saudi Arabia.

  I have no doubt in my mind that your excellent performance during the 
competition is a shinning testimony that Nigerians always excell in 
whatever they do and it serves as inspiration to the youth of Nigeria.” 
Dabiri-Erewa stated.

Dabiri-Erewa noted with satisfaction that the duo of  Dr Rufa’i and 
Anthony Joshua, who reclaimed his world heavyweight titles of IBF, 
WBO,WBF also in Saudi Arabia, have brought joy and glory to Nigeria in 

It will be recalled that the competition was organised by the Islamic 
Development Bank, IsDB, as part of the activities marking the World 
Arabic Language Day celebration at the bank’s headquarters.

  The United Nations had set aside December 18 every year as the World 
Arabic Language Day to create awareness for one of its official 

Dr. Rufa’i, whose classical poetry was adjudged the best among seven 
finalists, was presented the first prize by President of the Islamic 
Development Bank, Dr. Bandar Hajjar.

Two other African nationals, a Mauritanian and Sudanese, clinched the 
second and third positions respectively.

Aside Dr. Rufa’i who won the first prize, the other finalists that 
emerged from a rigorous selection process across multiple stages, were 
one Saudi, one Yemeni, one Egyptian, two Sudanese, and one Mauritanian.

  The competition was supervised by a committee of experts set up by IsDB 
and which was headed by Prof. Ahmad Masluh, a renowned scholar of Arabic 
Language and Prosody.

A prodigious scholar and education consultant, Rufa’i was for many years 
a TV presenter and  regular commentator on public affairs with special 
interest in international conflict resolution and education pedagogy.