Malawian Muslims who are anxiously looking forward to see Islamic learning centres using a universal syllabus should forget about it for now as the responsible committee for the formation of the document says it has no fund towards the project.
Last year Islamic organisations that run Islamic learning centres in the country met in Zomba with an aim of ensuring that Muslim children in Malawi are following the same syllabus regardless of location and learning centre.
Muslims across the southern African state welcomed the initiative saying it will ease the challenges children have been facing in acquiring religious studies. For years, children who have been moving from one madrassa to another have been finding it hard to acquire the religious studies since most Islamic centres uses different course outline.
Chairperson for the National Islamic Syllabus Committee (NISC) Sheikh Abdul-Rahman Kalako has meanwhile described the development as unfortunate.
“The committee has been very keen to see to it that the syllabus is put in place as quickly as possible, but with the unavailability of funds, it puts the prospects of having the first ever Islamic syllabus in jeopardy,” he said.
Since its establishment, the committee has managed to formulate programmes for classes one and two only.
In addition, it is remaining with a task to formulate the other two remaining classes (three and four) since it was only mandated to produce documents for lower classes only.
The formulated document is understood to be in draft form as the committee lacks resources to produce copies that will be given to responsible organisations for scrutiny and subsequent approval.
Sheikh Kalako who also heads Dawa department at a Zomba based Al Nidau Islamic Foundation, said the committee managed to produce the guidance for class one and two courtesy of the funds given by Al Baraka Charity Trust (ACT) and Al Nidau Islamic Foundation.
For the whole project to be completed the committee requires about five hundred thousand kwacha, the amount which cannot be diffuclt to source if Muslims in the country are really serious with the project.
The development comes days after Muslims saw a lot of millions of kwacha being squandered in organising the 2012 Ijitima which according to many participants was a waste of resources because it did not meet the intended purpose.
Despite spending such millions of Kwachas, participants complained that they did not get enough lectures and food as promised by the organising committee. They therefore suggested that it would have been beneficial if the funds would have been diverted to other important projects.
After the committee was established, the national chairperson of the Muslim Association of Malawi MAM said it will create a board that will be administering examinations in all Islamic learning centres once the syllabus has been formed.
Reporting by Ali Blessings Idi