Updated: Muslims Asked to Take Part in Crucial National Issues

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Supreme Council of Ulamah of Malawi Chairperson Sheikh Dr Imran Shareef says time has now come for Muslims to change their mindset and start taking part in crucial issues affecting the country.

Shareef said this in an exclusive interview with Malawi Muslims Official Website at the sidelines of the Public Affairs Committee (PAC)’s ‘All inclusive Stake Holders Conference’ which was held at Limbe Cathedral in Blantyre.

“As part of the civil society in Malawi and also as part of the people of Malawi, then we need to be (working) together with everybody who is doing something good for Malawi. We are not an isolated community; rather we are one community [because] whether you are a Muslim or a Christian, our destiny is the same. So, it is not good that as Muslims we should isolate ourselves from [attending] such gatherings because these are the gatherings that we try to find out a common agenda for all Malawians and betterment and upliftments of our lives,” he said.

The two-day conference held under the theme ‘Time to Reclaim our Destiny-Seeking Redress to Political and Economic Challenges,’ was aimed at finding solutions towards the end of the current economic and political problems rocking the country.

Commenting on the theme, Sheikh Dr Shareef advised all Malawians that before seeking God’s intervention to the current problems, it is important that they should look at their deeds and behaviour. He then quoted a Quranic verse and a Hadith which says God does not change a person unless he/she changes himself.

“As you know that there are social problems like some to do with homosexuality, which is not in line with God’s teachings. So, all these problems have to be tackled first then we should ask for Allah’s intervention,” said Shareef who also happens to be the Secretary General of PAC.

Some of the participants at the conference

In his welcome remarks, Chairperson of the conference Rt Bishop James Tengatenga also explained the significance of such gatherings and said that that is why PAC decided to invite delegates from all spheres of the society including the religious sector.

“You will agree with me that everybody is aware of the challenges our country is facing in the economic and political terrain. There are many versions from different sectors and at the same time, these sectors have created their own strategies to resolve their challenges. However, not everybody follows (their strategies) consistently and at the same pace and with the same understanding with the political and economic situations as they are unfolding in Malawi . Nor are we fully aware how deep-rooted some of these economic issues are. [Therefore], it is important in such situations to share knowledge among ourselves as Malawians,” remarked Bishop Tengatenga.

Bishop James Tengatenga addressing the gathering

At the end of the meeting, members of PAC resolved to give Malawi’s President Bingu wa Mutharika 60 days to turn around mryriad economic woes and political challenges or else resign. Members also demanded the President that if he fail to resign, should call for referendum within 90 days.

However, the PAC’s board, which is the organisation’s highest decision making body says will decide modalities of when and how to make a formal presentation of the resolutions.

Among other dignitaries who attended the function include Hon. Khumbo Kachali from Peoples Party (PP), George Nga Mtafu from United Democratic Front (UDF), Dr Jessie Kabwila Kapasula a lecturer at Chancellor College, Brown Mpingajira, Martha Kwataine, Dorophy Nkhoma among others,

Reporting by Marshall Dyton at Limbe Cathedral