Former President of the Republic of Malawi Dr Bakili Muluzi has asked Muslims in the country to stop blaming the government for not including them in some key positions.
Muluzi made the remarks during this year’s Iftaar Program organised by Islamic Concern in Blantyre.
The function, which was held at Iqra Islamic Propagation Centre under the theme ‘Active Participation in National Development’ saw several prominent Muslim leaders bemoaning their low level representation in government.
“Since time immemorial, Muslims in the country have been treated as second class citizens. Our representation in government is too low which makes difficult for us to share the cake like our friends of other faiths yet we pay tax. We don’t have people who can advise the government on the plight of Muslims in the country.
“However, it is important for us Muslims to ask ourselves why this is like that – where do we go wrong? Because we may blame the government while the problem is within ourselves. If we are not united and protest against this discrimination then definitely we will still continue to suffer,” said one prominent Muslim leader Hassan Nkata.
However, in response to the call, the former President told the gathering that Muslims should first find out the root cause of the problem before taking the government to task.
“We need to have adequate qualifications for us to be considered in government’s position. We need people with PHDs, Masters, etc because government cannot just appoint you for the sake of pleasure – you need proper credentials for you to be considered,” he said.
The ‘Political Mufti,’ Muluzi therefore called upon Muslims in the country to unite if they are to achieve their dreams. He said Muslims cannot fully participate in the national development if they are busy pulling each other down.
“Let all Islamic organisations come together and work towards the common goal. Our leaders should not be the source of divisions in our community because if we remain muddled as we are now, government or other people will take advantage of our ineptitude. The other problem is that there are other greedy sheikhs who connive with other politicians in order to divide the Muslims in the country – which is bad. How can we move forward?” lamented Muluzi.
The former President asked Muslims to follow his example by being courageous. He said for the first time in Malawi a Muslim challenged Dr Kamuzu Banda, the founder and father of Malawi who was the most feared person.
“In 1992-1993, me and my colleagues stood up to fight against one party system in Malawi and everybody here knows that Kamuzu was not an ordinary man but I challenged him and brought multiparty system in the country, so, why not you?” he said, adding that this can be achieved only if Muslims are united, speaking with one voice.
Muluzi then went on to thank God, for getting rid of the (DPP) government that believed in oppressing its citizens for no apparent reasons.