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Key holder of the Holy Kaaba Dr Saleh Al-Shaibi passes away

Key holder of the Holy Kaaba Dr Saleh Al-Shaibi passes away
June 22, 2024 Web Desk

MAKKAH - Dr Saleh bin Zain al-Abidin Al-Shaibi, the long-time custodian and key holder of the Holy Kaaba, passed away on Saturday.

According to the Saudi media, he has been suffering from a prolonged illness.

Dr Saleh was the 109th key holder of the Holy Kaaba. Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman expressed their condolences over his demise.

The honour of serving as the custodian of the Kaaba has been held by the al-Shaibi family for centuries. The duties of this sacred role include the care and maintenance of the Kaaba, opening and closing its doors, washing it, preparing and repairing the Kiswa (the covering of the Kaaba) as needed.

Saleh bin Zain Al-Abidin Al-Shaibi was the senior caretaker of the Kaaba, coming from a family that has been in charge of caring for the holy structure for centuries.

Al-Shaibi was born in Makkah, and held a doctorate in Islamic studies. He initially worked as a university professor, and had published several books on religion and history.

His family has been assigned the role of the caretaker of the Kaaba since the conquest of Makkah. The family has been in charge of the affairs of the Kaaba, inside out, cleaning, washing and ironing and repairing its Kiswa, receiving its visitors and everything related to it.

Saleh Al-Shaibi became caretaker of the Kaaba in 2013 after his uncle, Abdulqader Taha Al-Shaibi, passed away. The guardianship of the Kaaba has been entrusted to the sons of Al-Shaibi and their successors, as a tradition that was commenced by the Holy Prophet Hazrat Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) after the conquest of Makkah in the 8th year of Hijra. He handed the key of the city to Hazrat Usman Ibn Abi Talha and ordered that the honor should forever remain only in his family. –Courtesy The Arab News