Voice of the Cape

From the news desk

Ulema bodies distressed by spate of Muslim kidnappings

Two prominent ulema bodies have expressed alarm at the news of yet another apparent case of abduction of a Muslim businessman in South Africa. On Monday, well known Cape Town‐based businessman, Liyaqat Allie Parker, the founder of the Foodprop Group, was kidnapped as he pulled up at his business premises. Parker had just arrived inside the basement of his business premises in Parow after 9am, when he was allegedly accosted at gunpoint by five suspects and shoved inside a bakkie. The bakkie then sped off.

Parker’s case follows that of Shiraz Gattoo, a Johannesburg businessman, who has been missing since the 10th March this year. It’s believed a Durban‐based businessman was also kidnapped a few weeks ago and is still missing. Last year, several South African businessman were kidnapped and returned to their families, after high ransom monies had to be paid.

“There has been a spate of kidnappings over the past two years. As such, our community is troubled and concerned by such suspected cases of kidnapping, which were once rare, but now seemingly taking a pattern,” said Jamiat South Africa secretary general Maulana Ebrahim Bham.

“We appeal to the Minister of Police as well as the National Commissioner of Police
and all relevant law enforcement agencies to prioritise these cases, in order to stymie any criminal elements that are involved in kidnappings.”

Both the Jamiat and the Muslim Juridical Council have urged Muslims to pray for safety of the kidnapped community members so that they can return and reunite with their families.

“We request congregants at all mosques and all people of goodwill to pray for their safe return. We further appeal to anyone with relevant information to contact law enforcement agencies,” Bham added.

Western Cape police spokesperson Captain FC Van Wyk said a case of armed robbery and kidnapping has been opened for investigation. Anyone with information regarding the suspects or who witnessed the incident, is requested to contact the investigation officer, Detective Constable Chesron de Vries on 082 493 8472 or Crime Stop on 08600 10111. VOC

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