H.E.Sheikh Amor Bin Ali Al-Marhuby

Sheikh Amor was born in Zanzibar on 19 February 1915. He received his basic education in Zanzibar and ended at the Teacher’s Training College where he had a good foundation of an all-round education for three years. Sheikh Amor had been in the field of education all his life, starting as ordinary teacher and gradually rising to a head-teacher, Principal of the Teacher’s Training College, Education Officer-in -Charge of all schools in Zanzibar and finally, the Under-Secretary of Education.In recognition of his abilities and competence, the British administration in Zanzibar awarded him scholarships to Bakhter-Ruda Education Institute in Sudan in the early 1940’s and then to London University in 1947. When he left Zanzibar for Oman in 1970, he left a legacy of a man who molded the lives of the majority of people in Zanzibar, both civil-servants and politicians; and whose respect for him is still a legend.


Initially, in 1973 Sheikh Amor was employed as Director of Information in the Ministry of Information. During this period, and upon His Majesty’s directions, he extended the Radio services from being just covering the capital area to cover the whole of the Sultanate, including Dhofar. He was also able to introduce the Coloured TV and established the Information City in Qurum.


His Majesty the Sultan later on, appointed him as Ambassador to Germany. However, before he took office, he was transferred to the Ministry of Education, first as the Director General and then as The Under-secretary. Like the rest of the country at that time, everything was in its infancy and the Ministry of Education was no exception. Sheikh Amor was involved in urgent construction of primary schools across the Sultanate, gradually phasing in secondary schools followed by the Teacher Training Colleges for boys as well as for girls. Later on, Vocational Colleges were established to qualify young men and women to gradually take up jobs which were mainly filled by foreigners.Besides his normal duties, Sheikh Amor was also nominated member of The Consultative Council and, on completion of the first term, he was nominated Vice-President in the second term of four years. 

In May 1982, His Majesty the Sultan assigned Sheikh Amor the post of Secretary General of The Foundation Committee for the Establishment of Sultan Qaboos University. He started the project from inception to maturity. He began with reconnaissance of the area to the drawing board for the plans, supervising the construction work, as well as furnishing the entire university. Sheikh Amor also travelled world-wide gathering ideas that would help establish a first class institution most suitable for the Sultanate’s requirements consistent with Oman’s culture and traditions. Besides, he made sure that all deans and professors were literally hand-picked with an aim of setting the high standard of the university as directed by His Majesty the Sultan himself. His Majesty the Sultan appointed Sheikh Amor as Vice-Chancellor (a ministerial position) of the Sultan Qaboos University (SQU) in January 1986 when it first opened, and in that capacity, he led the teams that laid the academic foundations of the University in its early life. At a regional and international level, Sheikh Amor was a member of multi-educational organization and attended various conferences and symposia in education matters. He played a prominent role in the establishment of the Arab Gulf University in Bahrain. In appreciation of his efforts, a fellowship from St. Cross College of Oxford University was conferred upon him and an honorary Doctorate of Philosophy was awarded to him by the University of Bedford in the United Kingdom.At the age of 73 years and with the onset of ill-health, he left SQU in 1988 but continued working as an advisor to the ministry. After a long illness, he died in the early evening of Saturday, 12 February, 2000 at the age of 85. Sheikh Amor was a guiding light and spirit and, above all, his dignified, professional and personal conduct inspired all who were lucky to be associated with him. He will always be remembered as a man of charisma, cherished and respected by people of all ages, races and class. Among many of his qualities Sheikh Amor was bold, determined and persevering. He was never afraid of challenges and he always thrived when given responsibilities. This is well illustrated in the achievements during his lifetime. He was always down to earth and pleasant, and to many he has been very helpful.

We all pray to Allah, The Almighty to bestow upon his soul His Blessings, Mercy and Forgiveness - AMIN.


Highlights of achievements during the term of the late Sheikh Amor Al-Marhuby (1986-1987)


  • The Supervision of the foundation stages of Sultan Qaboos University Project
  • The official Royal inauguration of the University by His Majesty Sultan Qaboos Bin Said
  • The Royal visit by his Royal Highness, the British Crown Prince Charles, and his wife Lady Diana to the University