Baba Qaboos: In our hearts and minds forever
The Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos bin Said may be gone from our sight but is never out of our thoughts. In January this year, our hearts were saddened deeply by his loss but we are all glad that he left us with lifelong memories. His vision will forever be like a torch that we as his children will use throughout our lives.
He brought us up teaching us to love peace, to pride in ourselves and respect others; to love our country and culture and also how to conduct ourselves in the best manner. He made sure we felt secure in this beautiful country. He spread optimism amongst us and being a confident leader, he taught his people to have confidence in both him and ourselves. We appreciate all the efforts that he put into his people and the country to make it one of the safest and most beautiful places in the world, and because of him, Oman feels like home to many.
Today, Oman celebrates its National Day without him. Even though many people are far too young to remember that glorious day in 1970 when the Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos came to throne, they have seen the development that Oman has undergone which is remarkable. It has seen a rapid transformation in this short period of time.
Over the past years, the Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos’s exceptional leadership abilities and planning brought a radical transformation in Oman, in the life of each individual living in sultanate. According to citizens and residents, the hardships, lack of proper basic needs and proper transportation and communication are things of the past because of him. Oman has grown and developed manifold in 50 years.
In his first speech on July 23, 1970, the Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos said, “I promise you to proceed forthwith in the process of creating a modern government. My first act will be the immediate abolition of unnecessary restrictions on your lives and activities. My people, I will proceed as quickly as possible to transform your life into a prosperous one with a bright future. Yesterday, it was complete darkness, but with the help of God, tomorrow will be a new dawn on Muscat, Oman and its people.”
Oman has not only grown into a safe haven for citizens but also for expatiates, who say it is heaven on earth. Those who have been in Oman for a long time testify that the lifestyle in the sultanate has evolved into a modern, forward-looking society with its culture and heritage intact.
Under the Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos, Oman witnessed continuous overall development and the energetic Omani youth are moving forward to excel in their chosen fields. There have been numerous infrastructure developments, including roads, hospitals, schools, colleges and universities. All these cater to the future of our youths.
“In order to prepare our youth to undertake their responsibilities towards their country, and to show our pride in them, it will be our pleasure to lay the foundation stone of Qaboos University,” the Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos said on November 18, 1982.
Now almost every village is connected with excellent roads to nearby towns and every big town has specialist hospitals, technical training colleges and a university. The healthcare facilities in Oman are world class.
Among the significant structures that Oman has seen come up under the Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos are the Grand Mosque, the supreme court building, Royal Opera House Muscat, Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre, the Duqm, Salalah and Sohar ports and the new Muscat and Salalah airports.
What matters most to the people of Oman is that despite all the developments, it remains genuine and authentic. Wherever you go in Oman, you will find traditional Arab hospitality and culture and this has been the call of the Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos.
For some people, the county’s rapid development is a dream come true. Indeed it is because life in Oman during the 1970s was very hard. Oman started improving only after 1970, and now in 2020, there is no better place than Oman, thanks to the efforts of the Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos.
In the last 50 years, the country sped to the limits of achievement in every sector including empowerment and progress of women. Women are seen in all sectors, including participation in governance.
“We call upon Omani women to shoulder this vital role in the community, and we are confident that they will respond to this call,” the Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos said on the occasion of the opening of the second term of the Majlis A’Shura.
Educational institutions have developed and showcased what science and technology can do for society. Oman has made a clear mark in the digital arena and how it can bring in huge changes in the lives of citizens and the way of doing business. Yet another great achievement is that in Oman, people of all cultures and religion live in harmony; even expatriates consider Oman their own home.
“We live in an age of science and education. Education and work are our only means of progress and development within the context of our Islamic civilisation. It is your duty to bear this in mind and to work whole-heartedly for your graduation so that you may serve Oman well, your mother land,” the Late His Majesty Sultan Qaboos said in 1986.