hajj2016-a-journey-open hajj2016-a-journeyMEDIA STATEMENT FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Monday 24 October 2016


#AbramjeeOnHajj coffee table book launches

Tourism Minister, Derek Hanekom, says the publication of a coffee table book on Hajj by a South African, “captures the heart and soul” of the annual Muslim pilgrimage.

Hanekom was speaking at the launch of the photo journal #AbramjeeOnHajj.

Social activist, Yusuf Abramjee, who undertook his first Hajj this year, released the high-gloss A3 landscape coffee table book in Johannesburg. It has over 400 photographs, all taken with his iPhone 6 Plus, of #Hajj2016 which took place last month.

Hanekom said: “Tourism, including Hajj is about discovering new things, making a difference and meeting people.”

The Minister said “every Muslim I know, even those who are not religious, dream of going on Hajj. It is a life-changing experience.

“We thank Yusuf for sharing his experience. You captured the heart, soul and meaning of the Hajj. I studied the over 400 photos and they tell a rich story,” said Hanekom.

He praised SA pilgrims who fed thousands of people during the this years Hajj. Abramjee led the feeding scheme.

“Tourism between South Africa and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is growing steadily. It is not only good for our economy, but it contributes to tolerance, peace and friendship.”

Addressing almost 500 guests, Abramjee said he decided to share his journey to “inspire, motivate and educate people of all religions.

“Hajj unites us. The book is also about promoting social cohesion and it promotes religious tolerance,” he added.

“Muslims are often labeled as terrorists and we are wrongly associated with groups such as Al Qaeda and Boko Haram. We need to change this. Islam is a peace-loving religion…Hajj, which attracts millions of people, shows that,” Abramjee added.

Abramjee said Hajj “is indeed a journey of a lifetime. It is more than a physical journey. It was a journey of the inner soul towards self-purification and the awareness of the presence of God Almighty.”

The book sells at R750 and proceeds will go to two charities- Awqaf SA and Crescent Lifestyle for “Hajj Waqf”. The funds will be used to sponsor destitute pilgrims to travel next year.

Abramjee said he and Vision Branding publisher Yaseen Theba would be donating books to libraries and NGO’s. Over R275 000 was raised at the launch to sponsor books.

South Africa’s acting Ambassador to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Mohammed Abbas Khan, said “the coffee table book tells a unique story and the photos are outstanding.”

In the foreword, Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to South Africa, Abdullah Mohammed Almadhi, said #AbramjeeOnHajj “presents a text that is accessible, and illuminating, with an astounding visual richness, subtlety, and inspiring depth. “May the book inspire other pilgrims to perform the Hajj,” he added.

Former Public Protector, Advocate Thuli Madonsela, said #AbramjeeOnHajj “opens a window into an inspiring and insightful spiritual journey that is enlightening about the essence of true Islam. The photo journal is also an intriguing visual feast.”

Activist and former Robben Island prisoner, Ahmed Kathrada, said Abramjee’s book “will not only evoke memories of spirituality, but will show why ‘unity in diversity’ – wording that reflects on our own Coat of Arms.”

World renowned Islamic scholar, Mufti Ismail Menk, said: “From moment Yusuf Abramjee embarked on the #Hajj2016 journey, there was a lot of excitement. He promised to keep the world update with regards to the blessed journey. As the days passed we saw how his journey quickly became filled with great compassion towards others especially the under-privileged.”

The coffee table book has also been endorsed by, amongst others, Gauteng Transport MEC, Ismail Vadi, Secretary General of the Jamiatul-Ulama SA (Council of Muslim Theologians, Moulana Ebrahim Bham, Monique Strydom – SA hostage survivor and founder of Matla A Bana, Janine Hills founder and CEO of Vuwani Reputation Management and Brand SA director as well as businessman and former cabinet minister Tokyo Sexwale.

The book has photos of the Grand Mosques in Madinah and Makkah, historical Islamic sights and the five days of Hajj- the “tent city” in Mina, Arafat and Muzdalifah. The Jamarat, where the symbolic pelting of the Satan takes place, is also highlighted.

Some 1,8 millions went on Hajj this year- the lowest figure in many years.

#Hajj2016 #AbramjeeOn Hajj

can be ordered on-line:



Media can request images and digital book

VIDEO: (Launch Event – Houghton Golf Club)

Order Link:


*Yusuf Abramjee cell 082 4414 203

*Yaseen Theba (publisher) 064 4 000 000

Apple Again Tops Interbrand’s Best Global Brands Listing

Interbrand describes itself as the world’s largest brand consultancy and there’s no reason to doubt that, given its global network of dozens of offices and a client list that includes the kind of brands you can only dream of. Being such a massive enterprise it has the resources to generate analysis on the state of brands and branding, notably by a series of annual reports, such as this year’s Top 50 Swiss Brands, Best Canadian Brands and Best Global Green Brands.

This week Interbrand released the 2014 edition of its Best Global Brands ranking, which uses the firm’s brand valuation methodology to come up with a list of the top 100 global brands. Somehow it didn’t come as a surprise to learn that Apple once again snagged the number one spot, with Google and Coca-Cola in hot pursuit. The listing is accompanied with brief comments on each brand but more valuable is a collection of interviews with some of the marketing heavyweights of the firms on the list, as well as articles and analysis of various industry sectors.