Half of mosques in Saudi Arabia without imams


Saudi Gazette report

More than half of the mosques in the Kingdom do not have permanent imams to lead regular prayers, according to a statistical report issued by the Ministry of Islamic Affairs, Call and Guidance.

The report, covering the year 2017, said 51.5 percent of the mosques in the Kingdom were without formal imams, 63 percent did not have muezzins and 90.5 percent were without workers and cleaners to take care of them.

The report said the Northern Border Province was the only region with surplus imams. The region had 806 imams for 642 mosques.

It said no other region had imams in excess of the number of mosques. On the contrary, there was a shortage of imams in several regions, the report pointed out.

The report, carried by the General Authority for Statistics (GaStat), said the total number of mosques in the Kingdom in 2017 was 98,800 while there were only 47,315 imams, 36,549 muezzins and 9,371 cleaners.

The report said this simply meant that 51.5 percent of mosques in the Kingdom were without official imams.

According to the report, there were 18,073 mosques, 13,330 imams, 10,354 muezzins and 3,097 cleaners in Riyadh, 17,263 mosques and 6,564 imams in Makkah, 6,681 mosques and 2,758 imams in Madinah and 7,341 mosques and 4,862 imams in Qassim.