Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Georgia announces visa free travel for Saudis and Expats

According to Arabs news:

 Saudis can now travel to Georgia without a visa, according to Georgian Ambassador George Janjgava who visited Jeddah recently.
Janjgava made the announcement during a meeting at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry (JCCI), where he met with Ziad bin Bassam Al-Bassam, JCCI vice chairman, Fahad bin Saiban Al-Sulami, JCCI board member, Khalaf bin Hosan Al-Otaibi, and a number of executive leaders. 
He said the measure has been taken to strengthen bilateral ties and increase trade between Saudi Arabia and Georgia. 
He told Arab News that aside from visa-free travel, Saudis can stay in Georgia for a whole year with multiple entries. Even residents of the Kingdom can visit Georgia without a visa and stay up to three months, but they need to show their residence permit as well as hotel and airline bookings. 
Georgians, however, need a Saudi visa to visit the country, but unfortunately, there is no Saudi Arabian Embassy in Georgia, although many businessmen would like to visit the Kingdom to enhance and avail themselves of the trade opportunities in the Kingdom, he said. 
“We are expecting Saudi Arabia to open an embassy soon in Georgia to help in strengthening the relationship and trade between the two countries,” said the ambassador. He called on Saudi tourists to visit Georgia more often, as they can enjoy historical monuments, landscapes, healthy products and the mild climate of the place.
He said the Saudi economy is very strong and has the potential for tourism and investments in Georgia. Georgia has new opportunities, tourist capacities and investment prospects, and it has become the new destination for a lot of businessmen and investors in recent years.
Janjgava said that from January to September this year, almost 20,000 Saudi citizens and 6,500 Saudi residents visited the country, which means a doubling of the number of tourists in one year, where in 2015 the number was 10,000 Saudis and 3,000 residents who visited the country. He said this year they are expecting 30,000 Saudi visitors to Georgia.
Saudi investments in Georgia exceeded $100 million (SR375 million) after a rise in trade between the two countries, a 200 percent increase this year. This year almost 90,000 head of livestock came from Georgia.
Janjgava said Georgia is seeking more investments in agriculture and livestock, especially after the introduction this summer of direct flights by Georgian airline between Dammam and Tbilisi.
Al-Bassam said that the Kingdom’s stimulating investment environment provides financial and economic stability under Vision 2030, which offers great opportunities for investments in the development of infrastructure, education, transportation and health sectors.
JCCI is seeking to intensify the exchange of trade delegations in order to find a common mechanism to promote trade and investment between the two countries. Georgia has promising investment options for Saudi businessmen, he said.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Road Trip in Saudi Arabia.

Az Zulfi is in the region of Saudi Arabia (general) with it's 53,144 habitants is a place located in Saudi Arabia - some 163 mi (or 262 km) North-West of Riyadh, the country's capital.

I love the city. It's a mix of ancient and modern day houses.

I took these shot there:

Household items for sale in Saudi Arabia.

Household items for sale

Adigun Taofik Olalekan, PMP, CM, OSHM, SSGB, SFC

Best regards.

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

The First Snow City in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

The first Snow City in Saudi Arabia is set to be launched in Riyadh on Wednesday (13/7/2016).
The new facility at Al-Othaim Mall Rabwa will have a year-round temperature of under 3 degrees Celsius.
The SR100 million Snow City project has been built over 5000 square meters with an hourly capacity of 350 people.
It will feature a panoramic suspension bridge, ice bumper cars, sledge and ski zone, rope courses, climbing wall, snow mobiles among its attractions, according to Al-Othaim Leisure and Tourism Company

A refreshing experience to share with family and friends in a real and safe snow environment.

Discover a wonderful winter atmosphere with the assistance of a snow expert. They offer several type of activities driven by the 3 key words: discover, play and learn. They are proposing more than 12 different activities for kids and adults from snowmobile to ladder and rope way, bumper car on ice, tubing tracks and much more...

Snow City is not only about play, educational activities for families, schools and community groups are also available: build up an igloo with snow, learn how to ski on their beginner's slope.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Teaching Jobs Opening:

New job opening on has posted new job item(s)

Title: ESL Instructors Needed- Great Packages and FREE HOUSING- Come Explore!
Category: ESL/EFL/English
Location: Saudi Arabia
Date Posted: 06/26/2016
You may view the post at

Hotel in Makkah for Umrah or Hajji:

Al Nawazi Alfath Hotel.

I stayed in this hotel recently (June, 2016.)
They have a very good customer services and a standby  shuttle service to Haram like five (5) minutes to Haram by driving and fifteen (15) minutes by walking.

This hotel is located at:

Jarwal - Alotaibih
Omar bin Abdul Aziz Street
(Next to the old Jarwal police) Makkah.
Mobile: 0553303635

Reservation No: 922003536
I took some pictures there:

Hyperpanda in Makkan Mall, Hafar AlBatin.
Hyper Panda King Abdulaziz Rd, An Nayfiyah, Hafar Al Batin 39811

Friday, June 10, 2016

Newly open Makkah Mall in Hafar AlBatin, Saudi Arabia. Spooky in Hafar inside Makkah Mall.

This is biggest and the most beautiful mall in Hafar Al Batin, Saudi Arabia.


Application for ICTforChange in Nigeria

The Federal Government in Partnership with Huawei has organized ICTforChange program designed to train 2000 youth in ICT/Telecoms.

Age: 18 - 30 years
.Training Courses Covers;
1. ICT Fundamentals
2. Huawei Certified Datacom Associate (HCDA) Certification
3. Telecoms Power
4. BTS and Microwave Installation

Training Locations: Abuja and Lagos

Training is FREE!

How to Apply;
Register online at

Registration closes June 15, 2016.
On the ICT Course, From the website.....

Eligible Applicants
This program is designed for Universities/Polytechnics Graduates of Electrical, Electronics, Computer Science, ICT, Civil & Mechanical Engineering, Physics, Mathematics and other ICT related courses. All applicants must be between 18 – 30 years.

Friday, May 6, 2016

Saudi Green Card

Expatriates living in the Kingdom rejoiced over the new residency plan announced by Deputy Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, second deputy premier and minister of defense, last week. The proposal, similar to the US Green Card program, states that Saudi Arabia is planning to give permanent residency to foreign workers, particularly Arabs and Muslims, within five years. Many expats who spoke to Saudi Gazette cheered the deputy crown prince and said the move was “heroic” as well as “groundbreaking” as they had never expected it to materialize.
Online reactions on Facebook and Twitter were eager for the plan to be put in action. Those celebrating the move were emotional and appreciative while others admitted expats would be able to contribute more to the economy. The plan could generate $10 billion, with another $10 billion expected to be raised from the fees imposed for exceeding foreign worker quotas.
Expatriates would also be able to avail of the benefits and services being enjoyed by Saudis, including medical and banking facilities.
“It is a huge deal for us. Some of us have been living here for generations and this was truly a cherished dream of our parents and grandparents. To be able to live and die in the country they devoted their entire life to is not a small thing for them. I love and respect the rulers for understanding and showing compassion toward those of us who have devoted our lives and efforts to the nation. We take pride in being a part of the Kingdom and now for the first time we feel they too do so,” said Mohammad Ali, a 48-year-old Filipino technician living in Jeddah.
Many feel the move bridges the gap between the locals and expatriates.
“You know it also wipes away, if not completely, the notion that expats are treated like third world citizens. It’s always been an issue of locals looking down upon us. But now that Deputy Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman announced the residency plan, it really makes you feel like they value you too. They want us here. And maybe it’s time to get over the negative feelings and let go off. As I am sure Saudis who live abroad and have dual passports seek this right from countries they live in and are lucky enough to get it. Whereas in the Kingdom, we didn’t even feel like we belonged here. Now with this move, it is truly a matter of acknowledging us and welcoming expats to live with equality. I am really happy,” said Mirza Baig, a 39-year-old Pakistani sales manager living in Riyadh.
For those expatriates living in the Kingdom in special circumstances, like widows, orphans or single women, the Green Card system is one that holds a strong promise and gives them hope.
“This is the best news I have heard. Period. I have always worried about what is being passed on to me by generations. My father and ancestors had their businesses here, which now I am helping run, but you know they never got a chance to stay here permanently. There is always an issue or hindrance when it comes to legal standpoints; you cannot permanently live here. And that was the truth. You need a valid iqama or for my mother, a widow, she needed a mahram (legal male guardian). We really suffered because of such conditions. After I heard the announcement by Deputy Crown Prince Muhammad Bin Salman, I was so relieved. And thank you Saudi Arabia for being compassionate as an Islamic country, that is helping the community by paying attention to everyone’s needs as we do in our religion,” said Ali Hassan, a 30-year-old Indian consultant in Dammam.
As for those who have been born and raised in the Kingdom, the issue of lost identity now looks less troublesome as they are able to prepare a long term plan for themselves.
“I was born here, I am 45 years old and have lived nowhere else. In fact my children too were born here and I plan to raise them here. I choose this for our family, firstly because this is our country, the only place we know as home, and secondly because of its proximity to the holy mosques. As Muslims, this is our home. I don’t have words to express my happiness and gratitude to the rulers of this country who are planning this for us,” Abdul Rahman, an Indian expatriate living in Jeddah, told Saudi Gazette.
Since the proposal is part of reforms that will help the Saudi economy to move away from oil based revenue, the Green Card system can benefit the economy by pumping more than $10 billion a year, hopefully with a multiplier effect.
The new system will also help cut down foreign remittances by 30 percent, according to experts.
“From a business standpoint, this is good news. I am ready to pay taxes. I will invest more here. I will buy property, a house of my own, now that I can. Taxes are fair; people need to give back to the economy so I am more than happy to contribute. This helps create jobs for locals as well. Develop skills and help generate employment. The possibilities are endless. And also, finally we can call this our home,” said Ayub Khan, a Pakistani retailer in Jeddah.

As published by The Saudi Gazette, on 6th of May, 2016.

I hope the program will start soon and everyone could benefit.
Long live Saudi Arabia.

Saturday, April 30, 2016

British tourist family brutally attacked in Thailand

See video here (graphic, viewer discretion advised)

Four Thai men have been arrested and charged with the brutal assault of an elderly British couple and their middle-aged son who were punched and kicked unconscious

The footage, which makes for disturbing viewing, shows that the altercation began when the younger Briton apparently brushed shoulders with a Thai carrying a bottle.

There was a melee in the street and protracted pushing and shoving, with hands raised, before the Britons were knocked to the ground by a series of punches, including one straight to the face of the elderly woman.

They were then kicked as they lie motionless on the busy street while onlookers stood back and watched the assault.

Three Thai men were arrested two days after the attack and a fourth was detained on Thursday. They are expected to make an initial court appearance in coming days, but their victims will not need to be present as they have already given statements to investigators.

"The accused men say they are sorry and that they wouldn't have done this if they weren't drunk," .

A witness, who gave his account on the Hua Hin Forum internet site and called himself “Usual suspect”, said that he was walking down the same alley with his wife when he witnessed the brutal assault.

“Small groups were scattered at various places, all with the intention of attacking tourists. “The girls in the bar I was in all night waved goodbye to to elderly customers and their son. My wife and I followed only seconds after them.

“Within 20/30 metres of leaving the bar, the Thais were punching the 65-year-old old lady in the face!! The elderly gentleman was down on the floor, & their son was beaten very badly!!!”

“At this point I caught up to the scene and pushed one of the youths away from the woman. I got severely punched and kicked for my troubles, but felt the need to protect this frail lady.”

Writing in the aftermath of the attack, he continued: “Not one person (other than myself) came to aid these old folk, & they ended up laid in the road bleeding.

Hua Hin has a reputation as a family resort town, popular with middle-class Thais and tourists, and far removed from the “party town” excesses of holiday destinations such as Pattaya.

But there have been an increasing number of unprovoked street attacks on foreign tourists by locals in bar areas in resorts across the country.

There have also been a series of high profile murders and mystery deaths of Britons and other Western tourists in the country in recent years, raising concerns about Thailand’s safety as a tourist destination.

After the Hua Hin attack, a spokesman for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) said: "Our staff have been in contact with the family to offer assistance and will remain in contact with the local authorities."

The Foreign Office travel advice makes no reference to the Prachuap Khiri Khan province where the incident occurred. “British nationals make nearly one million visits to Thailand every year,” it states.

“Most visits are trouble-free, but there have been attacks (sometimes violent), particularly on the islands of Samui archipelago. Two British nationals were killed on 15 September 2014 on the island of Koh Tao in the Gulf of Thailand.”

Culled from Telegraph UK

Friday, April 29, 2016

Saudi Arabia: Now you can convert Umrah Visa to Visit Visa

Prince Sultan Bin Salman, President of Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH), launched here Sunday the Post-Umrah Program, an initiative which allows Umrah pilgrims to convert their visas into tourist visas.

This is a key channel of “The Kingdom is Muslims’ Destination” initiative, which was proposed by the commission several years ago.

In a press statement following the launching ceremony in Riyadh, Prince Sultan said the program aims at providing an opportunity to Umrah pilgrims to see the landmarks of the country, Islamic historical sites, attractive tourist destinations and shopping centers and malls.

They might also opt to make cultural, medical, educational and marketing tours, visit exhibitions and attend conferences after having completed their Umrah, he added.

He said the SCTH is carrying out the program in cooperation with the ministries of interior, foreign affairs and Haj.

Prince Sultan said the SCTH started the program several years ago and it took a long time to study. There were procedures that were not ready yet, like converting Umrah visa into tourist visa, among other procedures.

Before now, there is no tourist vis to saudi arabia. there are family visit, business visit, umrah and permanent family visit but nothing like tourist visa. Pilgrims on Hajj or Umrah visa are allowed to visit only Makkah, Medina and Jeddah. However, there are other historic sites in Islamic tradition which are located in other cities which pilgrims may also wish to visit. other pilgrims may wish to visit family members living in saudi arabia.

Article published by Saudi Gazzette

Imperial College London; Masters Scholarship, Faculty of Medicine

Dean's Master's scholarships

The Faculty of Medicine is offering 9 fully funded scholarships for students starting full-time or part-time Master's programmes in October 2016.

Please note:
Applications for 2016/17 scholarships are now open
The deadline for applications is Tuesday 26 April 2016
Applicants will be given a decision by Thursday 30 June 2016

Applications are invited from outstanding candidates from Imperial College London, the UK and worldwide who have the potential to become leaders in their field.

Home/EU students
Full tuition fees and a stipend of £17,000*
5 places are available

Overseas students
Full tuition fees and a stipend of £17,000*
4 places are available

Stipends will be paid in monthly instalments, subject to satisfactory progression. Awardees on courses which last more than a year will have their £17,000 stipend spread over the full lengh of the degree.

The Faculty offers a wide range of Master's degree programmes, as well as PG Certificates and Diplomas, and all students will belong to the Graduate School, which provides a comprehensive Transferable Skills Programme.

Please ensure you read our eligibility criteria before making an application. Exceptions cannot be made to these criteria so please check them carefully.

Thursday, April 28, 2016

University of Edinburgh Scholarship

Scholarship Highlights
All applications must be submitted no later than 1st June 2016
Scholarship available for undergraduate, postgraduate and online
60 postgraduate masters scholarships available

The scholarships will be awarded to students who are residents and citizens of a Sub-Saharan African country 

About the Program
The MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program at Edinburgh supports Africans from economically disadvantaged communities to study at the University of Edinburgh. Through the generous support of the Foundation, Scholars will be provided with the opportunity to become leaders within their communities and to improve the lives of countless more when they return home to Africa.

The Program at the University of Edinburgh
At the University of Edinburgh, the seven year programme will support 200 of the brightest and best students from Africa, from disadvantaged backgrounds who have a commitment to give back to their communities. It will provide full scholarships, including accommodation costs, living costs, travel and tuition fees to 80 undergraduate students and 60 postgraduate students taking courses on campus at Edinburgh. 60 Scholars from other MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program institutions will also benefit from participating in a number of online distance learning Masters programmes offered by the University of Edinburgh.
As well as receiving an excellent education at one of the top ranked universities in the world, undergraduate Scholars will:
  • Participate in UK and Africa based Summer Schools
  • Complete a course on African development
  • Engage in a volunteering project in their home country
  • Undertake a work-based placement in the UK; and
  • Receive an outduction course on their return to their home country.
Following their graduation, around 50% of our undergraduate Scholars will then be supported to complete distance learning Masters degrees after their return to Africa.  
Postgraduate masters Scholars will:
  • Complete six courses followed by the production of a dissertation 
  • Participate in a retreat designed to nurture leadership skills
  • Attend a short Summer School based in Africa; and 
  • Undertake an internship which will include reflective learning.
Online distance Masters Scholars will:
  • Undertake a range of online distance Masters degrees which will be available to 60 Scholars from other MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program institutions.

How to Apply:

Click here to read more

Contact: Scholarship and Financial Support Team
Work: +44 (0)131 651 4070