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Madrasas Closure Angers Uganda Muslims

Published: 10/05/2013 08:18:12 PM GMT
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CAIRO - Facing repeated closures of Islamic Qur'an schools, Uganda Muslims have complained about arbitrary decisions by the government, accusing it of targeting the religious minority under the pretext of fighting terrorism. (more)

CAIRO - Facing repeated closures of Islamic Qur'an schools, Uganda Muslims have complained about arbitrary decisions by the government, accusing it of targeting the religious minority under the pretext of fighting terrorism.

“Madrasas are there with the objective of teaching the Holy Book and inculcating good morals in children; elevating them towards the height of virtues to avoid corruption and other related vices,” the head of all Qur'an Schools in Uganda Sheikh Yahya Lukwago told The Tripoli Post on Friday, April 26.

“We cannot stop to teach Qur'an to our Children that are to betray the Islamic faith,” he added.

Lukwago accused the Uganda Police Force of searching Kampala and the neighboring districts in a bid to shut the Muslim Madrasas which teach the Noble Qur'an to Muslim kids.

According to the government, these schools were claimed to work as a potential safe haven for training terrorists.

Along with closing Islamic schools in Kampala and its suburbs, the Uganda Police Force has made several arrests of Qur'an teachers and Sheikhs for interrogations.

The police also closed several Islamic Qur'an schools during this dubious operation.

Al-Hajji Muhammad Kisambira, the Secretary General of Uganda Muslim Supreme Council, the governing body of all Muslims in the country, blamed the action of the Uganda Police forces for closing the Madrasas without a genuine reason.

“They are closing our schools based on unrealistic reasons, and all the back stops on the table of the Police force, the same people,” he said.

Ugandan Muslims comprise some 14 percent of the predominantly Christian country's 32-million population, according to the CIA Factbook.

The registered Qur'an schools in Uganda are totaling to 385 and many others are undergoing the registration process.

All these schools are privately owned and are being funded by the Ugandan Muslim community.

Targeting Muslims

Uganda Muslim leaders lamented the government measures, confirming that the Qur'an schools and Madrasas are there for the good of Islam and the Ugandan community at large.

“Catholics carryout almost the similar program, not to forget the protestant church which practice Sunday-school theological teaching programs,” sheikh Lukwago said.

“All these programs are carried out for them to make sure that their children behave like Christians, why our case is different?”

He also emphasized that Muslims will not abandon the Madrasa program.

“Islam is not a religion of yesterday, it came to stay no matter how much is invested in stopping it,” he said.

Al-Hajji Kisambira urged Uganda Police forces to cooperate with the Muslim leaders to avoid biased measures against Muslims.

“We do not defend individuals but our Madrasas,” he advised.

“If there is any problem even with Madrasas, we are ready to play cooperative in order to solve it.”

Reproduced with permission from OnIslam.net




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