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Muslim clerics call for peace in vote hunt

[KEMNAC Chairperson Sheikh Juma Ngao (Centre) Photo/Ahmed Omar].

The Muslim community living in Mombasa is urging politicians and Kenyans at large to maintain peace in their vote hunting campaigns ahead of the August polls.

Led by the chair of the Kenya National Muslim Advisory Council (KEMNAC) Sheikh Juma Ngao, the Muslim scholars urged Kenyans not to allow the highly charged political environment to lead to chaos.

Sheikh Juma Ngao asked the political class to desist from acts of lawlessness during their public campaigns and demonstrate a sense of oneness as the country prepares for the August elections.

The clerics were addressing the media at Tononoka open ground during special prayers for rain as drought and water shortage continued to bite many parts of the country.

The Islamic traditional prayers referred to as ‘Special Prayers’ for rain (salat al-‘istisqa) are performed to seek God’s intercession during drought and times when rain fails resulting in severe crisis to all living things.

Sheikh Juma Omar the National Mufti Kenya Muslims National Advisory Council said Kenyans led the faithful in the prayers where the faithful invoked God for rains and ending the drought that has ravaged the country causing untold sufferings, deaths of animals and crop failure.

The Muslim leaders also prayed for national healing during the electioneering period saying Kenya has long been an oasis of peace we hoping the impeding poll can be held safely and peacefully.

The vocal cleric urged the diverse Kenyan communities to be committed to peace and pray against any unforeseen eventualities.

The Muslim cleric said elections need not be a ‘matter of life and death and thus should not bring about undue tension and fear in the country.

Ngao, said many people are gripped by fear due to heightened tension in the country and urged the political protagonists to tone down on their rhetoric that has the potential of inciting violence.

While revisiting the 2007 post-election violence that claimed hundreds of lives, Ngao said elections always trigger tension, something that should be a thing of the past.

Ngao also urged the media not to engage in polarization and enmity political discussions which can fuel animosity during campaigns, elections and after the polls.

“We are calling the National Intelligence body of the government to monitor all the political debates in radio stations to censor those who could be propagating political animosity through the media,” Ngao said.

He said as religious leaders, they have a special role to play as agents of peace and reconciliation and in ensuring that Kenya becomes a peaceful and prosperous nation.

Sheikh Ngao exhorted the well-off Muslims to give charity to the less fortunate members of the society during the fasting period.

He said following the tax exemption of this important commodity, traders should reduce the prices to make them affordable to poor Muslims.

On his part, Sheikh Juma Omar said Kenyans should not tire of praying for peaceful elections.

Sheikh Juma Ngao has also called on president Uhuru’s government to mobilize government resources and support the Muslim communities across the country especially this time the world facing the Covid-19 pandemic.

On his part Sheikh Juma Omar, the National Mufti Kenya Muslims National Advisory Council said Kenyans should not tire in praying for peaceful elections and urged the politician against making inflammatory remarks which could lead to tension.

“I call you politicians, let us unite to pray for peace during the electioneering period comes and goes but Kenya will remain,” Said Sheikh Omar.

Former Wakfu Commission, Commissioner Zuberi Noor called the Muslim community to preach peace during elections and guide the community on electing credible leaders who are not corrupt.

“During this holy month of Ramadan lets us unite as one Muslim family to chart forward a debate on the betterment of the Muslim society through development agenda,” called Zuberi.