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05.05.2020 Feature Article

Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) is of higher status than presidents.

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‘And indeed we have not sent you (O Muhammad) except as a mercy to the worlds’ (Quran 21:107). This Holy Quran verse justifies why Muhammad (Peace Be upon Him), is of a high status not only to presidents and other leaders but to the entire humanity.

Among the greatest and most influential 100 men mentioned in the book of Dr. Michael H. Hart, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) is considered number one. Mohammad (PBUH) was born more than 1400 years ago in Arabia (Mecca), received a universal message from our creator (Allah).

This unique message which is compiled in the Holy Quran and Hadith has stood the test of time, hence deserving that Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) be honoured rather than ridiculed. Notwithstanding, the Symbols of Islam must be glorified and accorded all the respect they deserve, even in predominantly Christian countries.

In one of his many traditions, Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) prophesised that a pandemic would come and warned that people should make sure they don’t leave their areas, and that those who lived far should not come where the epidemic is; until such a time when the situation became normal. These prophesy has come to pass.

Today, the novel corona virus is wreaking havoc, as epitomised in its case series in both infections and deaths. The same protocols of social distancing and hand-washing as prescribed by Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) millennia ago, are the same being recommended by WHO and to the leaders of several countries in the prevention and control COVID-19.

A video clip which went viral on social media, in which the South African policemen and women ‘rightfully’ but bereft of professional conduct raided a place of worship in one of the outskirts of Pretoria; this has caused more consternation than praise.

The men and women in blue without respecting the tenets of religion clearly stipulated in both the Quran and the Bible did not even remove their shoes when raiding a holy place of worship. Undeservingly, they also uttered blasphemous words ridiculing and undermining the status of the messenger of Islam (Mohammad peace be upon him).

Utterances like: “is Mohammad greater than the president?” should be condemned with all the contempt deserved. The police need to style-up, and also learn to exercise restraint in circumstances they are mandated to oversee. Severally, these would be custodians of the law, have been found to be taking the law in their hands instead.

South Africa is built on strong foundations, among which the respect of human rights is supreme. The African culture is also rich in the notion of Ubuntu or Obuntu (humanity), which has been the foundation of our forefathers: Nelson Mandela, Julius Nyerere, Kwame Nkrumah and Patrice Lumumba to mention but a few.

Two wrongs can’t make right. Our Muslim brothers broke the law in the same manner the communications Minister Mrs. Stella Ndabeni Abrahams did, but the unwarranted way the police handled the situation is highly regrettable. One Police officer in that clip was heard asking whether Prophet Muhamad (PBUH) is bigger than the president. Another officer could be seen pointing a gun to an unarmed congregant.

This action has since caused ill-feelings among the Muslim community and alarm not only in South Africa but to the entire world, hence prompting the Police Minister to apologise.

Mr. Zahiir Omar, a leading advocate, out of anger, called upon especially the Muslims faithful to disobey and continue with congregational prayers because according to him, even the courts in South Africa are conducting proceedings without proper social distancing protocols. Advocate Zahiir Omar has since retracted his earlier appeal.

However, one of the opposition parties, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), has dragged him to court accusing him of recklessness, and in effect suggesting that his name be struck off the Attorney’s roll.

In light of this, the action by the ill-mannered police officers deserves response from the faithful: Yes, Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) is of greater status, and unequivocally so, unequalled to anyone in this material world, be it presidents and other leaders besides.

This action also exposes the lack of professionalism or the lack of it for that matter, of African officers in uniform, including South Africa, which the rest of the continent looks upon as role-models.

COVID-19 has reared its ugly face in so many ways to recount. From a humane viewpoint, if the South African officers and men ordained with the status of moral leadership on the continent can’t lead by example, COVID-19 has also exposed the lack of kindness from other leaders across the continent, and the unjustifiable corruption in the manner in which relief is being distributed.

I would like to commend the Minister of Police, Mr. Bheki Cele, for taking responsibility, to apologise over the blasphemous verbiage unleashed by policemen and women in the Mosque operation.

Apologising during the time when Muslims are observing the holy month of Ramadan, is such an act of ingenuity; Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) also urged the faithful to always exercise restraint and forgive when provoked.

Leadership comes from taking responsibility just as the New Zealand Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern did when condemning the attacks on Muslim worshippers in her country.

About the Author:
Abubakar Sematimba: Is a Student at Dam School of Policing in Pretoria-South-Africa [email protected]

By Abubakar Sematimba

Abubakar Sematimba
Abubakar Sematimba, © 2020

The author has 49 publications published on Modern Ghana.Column: AbubakarSematimba

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