Look: Worshippers offer first Friday prayers of 2022, mark start of new UAE weekend

Jumuah prayers were offered at 1.15pm across mosques in the country



Photos by Shihab
Photos by Shihab
by

A Staff Reporter

Published: Fri 7 Jan 2022, 2:06 PM

Last updated: Fri 7 Jan 2022, 2:30 PM

Worshippers in mosques across the UAE offered the first Friday prayers of 2022, marking the start of the country's new weekend.

The UAE's shorter workweek, comprising a two-and-a-half day weekend, came into effect on January 1.

It was earlier announced that mosques in six emirates, excluding Sharjah, would host Friday sermons and prayers after 1.15pm through the year.

In Sharjah, where a three-day weekend was announced for employees and students, Friday prayer timings remain unchanged.

Friday half-day, Saturday and Sunday form the new weekend in the country.

The Friday half-day, combined with the change in prayer timings, has helped government employees and students get off work and school, respectively, by 12 noon and be part of the congregational act of worship.

Most private companies across the country have shifted to a Saturday-Sunday weekend, without adopting the half-Friday off.

Instead, private sector companies are offering midday breaks to staff so that they can take part in the prayer.

The Federal Authority for Government Human Resources on Thursday also announced flexible timings and work-from-home options for employees.

The new workweek system, which started after the New Year, aims to help employees strike a better work-life balance and increase productivity.

With most schools and private firms shifting online amid the surge in Covid-19 cases, employees also experienced a smooth drive to work as they ushered into a new working week.

Many residents have hailed the new workweek, which they say will boost productivity and improve their mental health.

Employees across the UAE also made plans to better invest their time during the longer weekends, which includes spending more time with family and pursuing hobbies.


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