The late Umar Zahir, a state dignitary and honoree of the Order of the Distinguished Rule of Izzuddin, has been laid to rest after a state funeral in the Maldivian capital.
Umar Zahir died at the age of 85 years in a hospital in Male’ City on Monday afternoon.
The funeral prayer was held after Isha at the Islamic Center, and he was laid to rest at the Galolhu Cemetery.
The funeral prayer was attended by President Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, Vice President Faisal Naseem, Parliament Speaker, former President Mohamed Nasheed, and former Islamic Minister Dr. Mohamed Shaheem Ali Saeed, along with senior state officials, parliamentarians, and a large number of private citizens.
Umar Zahir was hospitalized at the Dharumavantha Hospital after testing positive for COVID-19.
He died at 02:02 pm on Monday.
President Solih, who described Umar Zahir’s death as a loss to the nation, has declared that the national flag be flown at half-mast in mourning for three days from December 21-23.
Umar Zahir served the nation in various capacities for over 49 years, including as Minister of Home Affairs and Social Services, the Minister of Home Affairs and Sports, and the Minister of Construction and Public Works.
He also served as a parliamentary representative for Male’ constituency, Special Advisor to the President, and Senior Minister in the President's Office.
Umar Zahir is celebrated for his commitment and contributions in the service of the public. Some of the significant projects undertaken under his leadership include the reclamation of K. Thilafushi, contributions during the initial reclamation phase of Hulhumale’ and various phases of the road development project in Male’.
He was awarded the Order of Distinguished Rule of Izzuddin in recognition of his many contributions to the nation in 2008.