Thursday, 1 December 2016

Muslim Youth And Election Violence

There is a wrong notion among some people across the globe that Islam promotes violence and crime, due to the conduct of some Muslims who are engaged in some forms of crime and violence. The nefarious activities of groups like ISIS, AL-SHABAB, Boko Haram, and others have further painted the religion in bad light. The perpetuation of these unwarranted actions by some Muslims must be condemned and if any of them is arrested, he must face the law as a criminal and not as a Muslim.

Does Islam teach Muslims to be violent and criminals? Absolutely No! Rather, Islam itself means ‘peacefully submitting to the will of Allah. It is therefore absolutely wrong for any individual to tag Islam as violent or to call any group of criminals as “Islamic Terrorists”, “Islamic Suicide Bombers”, or “Islamic War Fighters”. One can however put the blame squarely at the doorstep of Muslim parents, Islamic Scholars and the Muslim Ummah at large for doing very little to prevent Muslim youth from engaging in crime and violence. Allah is not pleased with people who perpetrate crime and violence. Allah and His final Messenger, Prophet Mohammad (Peace Be Upon Him) have signed a serious warning to all human beings in the universe and entreated Muslims to be peace loving always.

This is found in Quran 5:32, where Allah says, “…if any one killed one person, it would be as if he killed the whole of mankind; and if any one saved one life, it would be as if he saved the life of the whole human race…”. The Prophet Mohammed (Peace Be Upon Him) preached and lived peacefully, throughout his entire life and enjoined his followers not to relent in this regard. He said, “Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should talk what is good or keep silent, unite the bond of kinship and serve his guest generously”. The Prophet also said, “None is a true Muslim until he desires for his brother that which he desires for himself” and that “Allah has no mercy for one who has no mercy for others”. If the words of Allah and His final Messenger about peace, love and harmony are to be written down, even an ocean of ink would finish and one percent of it has not yet be written.

Considering the few verses of Allah and His Messenger, it is incumbent upon all Muslims and humans in general to live together in peace and unity and to shun crime and violence. As the nation goes to the polls, Muslim youth across the country must be extra careful with politicians who come to them with bribes and mouthwatering promises with the intent of influencing them to use illegal procedures including force and violence to enable them to win power. They must be mindful of the strong warning from Allah and His Messenger and to desist from such despicable actions. As they move around to support their candidates and to canvass votes for their political parties, they must let the verses of the Noble Quran and the Authentic Hadith be in their hearts and minds to serve as guide and direction in any circumstance they find themselves. As true Worshippers of Allah and genuine followers of Prophet Mohammed (Peace Be Upon Him), they cannot afford to disappoint themselves in that regard, but to live an exemplary life worthy of emulation.

Muslims must be reminded of their sovereign duty to uphold the teachings of Islam at all times and to be unwavering in order to earn the love and blessings of Allah. These include abstaining completely from violence and crime, and instead fight very hard to promote peace, love, unity and societal co-existence. May the Almighty Allah continue to grant Ghana peace and unity before, during and after the elections.

By Abu Ibrahim Azebre, Economics Tutor at Fumbisi Senior High School –Upper East 0240393109

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