Ulema in Cape Town have been urged to pray for peace and tolerance during the Friday Jumuah khutbah, as South Africa faces another xenophobic crisis, a stark reminder of 2008. Increased attacks on foreign nationals in Durban have sparked widespread condemnation across the country, with President Jacob Zuma on Thursday publically speaking out against xenophobia.
Thousands of foreign nationals have over the last week and a half been forced to flee their homes and businesses across Durban, after locals attacked them and looted their shops.
The support for the attacks to stop against foreign nationals has gained enormous momentum, with various groups marching in solidarity across the country.
The Muslim Judicial Council (MJC) said violence goes against the beliefs of Islam and therefore they do not condone the actions of those who attack foreigners. MJC secretary general Moulana Abdul Khaliq Allie said the xenophobic attacks were devastating to the well being of the country.
“It is very sad to see the level of violence perpetrated on a fellow African in fact against a fellow human being,” said Allie.
The Cape Town Islamic Educational centre (CTIEC) also added its voice, saying it does not condone the acts of xenophobia. Sayed Ridhwaan Mohamed Ziyaee speaking on behalf of the CTIEC made reference to a script in the Quran.
“Oh man kind we have created you from a single pair of a male and female and made you into nations and tribes that you may know each other,” quoted Ziyaee.
He further echoed the sentiments of the MJC stating that Islam does not permit any violent act against any other human being.
“Allah SWT has given us the opportunity to love each other and be there for each other.”
He added that that as a country where there are many different nations living together; the spirit of Ubuntu must be restored so that all those different nations and cultures can live together.
Allie said imams always promoted the idea of peaceful co-existence and that Muslims locally have tolerance and harmonious interaction with all their brothers and sisters. VOC (Imogen Vollenhoven)