Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Habib and Khaled Al-Faris
RIYADH – In an exclusive interview given to Okaz/Saudi Gazette Prince Miteb Bin Abdullah, Minister of State, Cabinet member and Commander of the National Guard, shares minute details about the life of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah, his daily routine, views, policies etc.
The King wakes up to perform Fajr prayer and commences his work by going through the listed activities of the day with the Chief of the Royal Court before receiving people.
There are people who love their leaders, and there are leaders who love their people and dedicate their life to serving them. King Abdullah is the leader for whom his nation and his people are the main priorities.
Prince Miteb says that the love of the King for his people is immeasurable.
Excerpts from the interview:
How does the King spend his day?
King Abdullah wakes up early in the morning and performs Fajr prayer then supplicates Allah for a long time before reading the Holy Qur’an. Afterwards, he sleeps and wakes up around 8:30 a.m. Then he performs Al-Dhuha prayer and has his breakfast and asks for the day’s business. The Chief of the Royal Court, Khalid Al-Twaijri, brings the list of the day’s activities to the King.
After performing Dhuhur prayer, the King signs files and takes decisions. This continues until Asr prayer. In between, he sometimes answers phone calls or receives visitors. This depends on his schedule. In the evening, he gets back to work. Later he tries to walk for a long time. This is how the King spends his day.
When does the King feel happy and when does he feel angry?
King Abdullah feels happy when he sees a Saudi citizen doing something good. If the citizen does something bad, he feels angry inside, but does not show it. This is his main problem, he keeps anger bottled inside and does not vent it. If he vents his anger, he does so in a way that does not show he is angry. Oppression and injustice make him very angry. The thing that makes him furious is when someone violates the rules of Shariah and the rights of citizens. These things enrage him.
How about the love between the leadership and the people?
I would like to talk about King Abdullah not as my father only but as a father to all Saudi citizens. Allah has planted the love for the King in the heart of each and every citizen. I swear by Allah that the love King Abdullah has for the citizens is immeasurable. This is a fact. He is a kind human being. Before he mentions his sons and family in his prayers and supplications, he mentions the citizens. The first thing he does when he gets up is to ask about Saudi citizens. If he hears something good about a Saudi citizen, he feels very happy. His entire life is dedicated to religion and the country. All Saudi citizens I have met have talked about their love for the King.
Today, I honestly say the citizens cannot realize the deep love King Abdullah has for them. King Abdullah loves his country and people more than himself and his sons.
We saw this when he was in hospital. When we learned that the treatment might take a long time, we opened a big room which got filled every day with thousands of citizens who displayed their true love and care for the King. They wanted to enquire about the King’s health.
We saw very old men and people with special needs and women as well as children visiting the King and expressing their love for him.
During the Council of Ministers sessions, he always tells the ministers to meet the citizens and know their problems and their needs.
What is the thing that preoccupies the King’s mind the most?
King Abdullah, whether sick, healthy, happy, or annoyed, is always preoccupied with the thought about the welfare of Saudi citizens. When he looks at the foreign policy, he looks how it affects the Saudi citizens.
What does the King think about the events in Syria?
Syria is one of the countries King Abdullah loves. The King has not spared any efforts to resolve the Syrian crisis. In the beginning, he sent countless letters to the Syrian President and sent many officials to meet him and made continuous phone calls to warn him about the gravity and danger of the situation. Regrettably, with no avail. The King feels hurt inside when he watches Syrian citizens killed by Syrians.
When does the King meet his sons?
King Abdullah dedicates quality time with his sons. Despite his enormous responsibilities and his official schedule, he lives a normal life with his family. He spends time with them and plays with sons and grandchildren and asks about their performance at school.
How does the King select his secretaries, ministers, or officials?
When selecting a secretary or a minister, King Abdullah puts the fear of Allah before anything else then truthfulness and honesty.