Islamic Information Bureau (IIB) on Wednesday took non Muslim journalists to the masjid in a move to end misconceptions about Islam.
Filled with excitement and high expectations, the journalists were taken to all strategic places within one of the country’s grand masajid, Al-Madina Masjid in Limbe.
Sheikh Dinala Chabulika, National Coordinator for the organisation said that they invited non Muslim journalists because they have an important role to play in as far as telling people the truth about Islam is concerned and as one way of clearing misconceptions they have or hear towards the religion of Islam and its followers.
“We wanted them to understand so that when they are writing about Islam they should know what they are doing. As you know, in media accuracy is very important. Therefore, this is the only way we will be able to make them understand Islam. Also, as Muslims, we should not close the door. Let people from other religions come forward and learn more about Islam,” said Sheikh Chabulika.
In fact, most of the non Muslim journalists in Malawi do copy and paste stories about Islam from international media houses such as BBC without verifying the content with the local Muslim leaders. This has angered many Muslims in the country with some calling it ‘irresponsible’ journalism.
It is against this background that Islamic Information Bureau decided to come up with different programs to help the local journalists to understand what Islam really is than relying on stories from western media in which some of them have a propaganda element in nature.
One of the journalists Mayeso Chikhadzula of Malawi Broadcasting Corporation described the tour as historical and an eye opener.
“Our visit to the mosque [masjid] today has opened our eyes and helped to clear misconceptions we had about Islam. In the past, I was one of the people who was wondering why Muslims do remove shoes, why do they face to Saudi Arabia but now is a history because I have known the truth,” he said.
Chikhadzula also said it is only through this kind of interaction that journalists will be able to write accurately about Islam.
Before the tour, the journalists were presented with copies of the Holy translated Quran in order to help them understand Islam in depth.
Some of the media houses that joined the tour include Star FM, Capital FM, Power 101, MBC Radio, MBC Television, MIJ FM as well as Radio Maria.