Gulf | Saudi Arabia

Saudi minister praised for gallant offer

Official offers to give up first class seat on flight to disabled Bahraini woman

  • By Habib Toumi, Bureau Chief
  • Published: 11:32 December 3, 2012

  • Image Credit: Supplied
  • Yusuf Al Othaimeen, the Saudi social affairs minister

Manama: Online users have heaped praise on a Saudi minister for giving up his first class plane seat for a disabled Bahraini woman.

Yusuf Al Othaimeen, the social affairs minister, was in his single seat on board of the plane flying from Riyadh to Bahrain when he saw a physically challenged Bahraini woman facing difficulties.

He immediately offered his seat and urged the woman accompanying her, booked to fly in the economy class, to swap seats with him and remain in the first class section while he takes her economy class seat, Saudi news site Sabq reported on Monday.

Despite his insistence, the Bahraini companion refused to allow the minister to move to the economy class and thanked him for his humanitarian gesture.

Al Othaimeen was on his way to Bahrain to attend a conference.

“It is such simple, but significant acts that renew your faith in the human side of government officials,” Mansoor Al Asmari commented.

Abdul Rahman Bu Karsha thanked the minister for his thoughtfulness.

“I also thank him for his modesty. It shows his human dimension has not been dimmed by the position. I simply wish all the other ministers were so kind with the common people,” he posted.

Ben Borjes remarked that he looked forward to meeting ministers on planes to see whether they too would be so helpful.

X-baham said that he appreciated the gesture, but reminded the minister there were urgent social issues in Saudi Arabia that needed his attention as well.

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