Uganda: Muslims Urged to Support National Dialogue

The Mufti of Uganda, Sheikh Shaban Ramadhan Mubajje, has asked the public to support the national dialogue process as a way to promote peace and unity in the country.

"We need to remain peaceful in the country and by so doing, everyone has to come on board and support the ongoing chase for the national dialogue," Sheikh Mubajje said while addressing Muslims at Gadafi Mosque in Old Kampala yesterday.

The national dialogue process was launched last year by President Museveni to be spearheaded by the inter-religious council to address patriotism, Pan-Africanism, socio-economic development and democracy and other governance issues.

Government committed Shs11b for the programme to kick start this year, which committee members said was not enough.

Sheikh Mubajje said: "We shall only achieve desired peace and tranquility if we all come out and support the programme."

He also warned Muslim leaders not to mislead believers.

Muslim leaders across the country used to make the call for peace among all Muslims and their trust in Allah as they celebrated Idd-ul-Aduha prayers yesterday with emphasis put on love, kindness, honesty and care.

"When Allah gives you wealth, he wants to see if you can give back some of the wealth to him through offertory. And if you do so, you get blessings in turn. But if you don't, your wealth doesn't get value.

"You should emulate Abraham who offered to sacrifice his only son. Allah tests us through different ways but if these tests find you faithful, you pass them," deputy Imam of Wandegeya Mosque in Kampala Fauzah Kasule said.

Addressing the faithful at Wandegeya Mosque, Kampala Lord Mayor Erias Lukwago decried the arbitrary arrests of innocent Ugandans by security personnel, saying such acts keep Ugandans in fear all the time.

"None of us is sure if they will be arrested by security agencies or not. This kind of anxiety will paralyse the country. Such unjust acts must be stopped. But in all this we ask you to remain peaceful and seek justice where it is due," he said.

He also thanked MPs for quashing sections of the Kampala Capital City Authority Bill which had attempted to make the Kampala minister the political head of the city instead of the Lord Mayor.

By Derrick Wandera, Amos Ngwomoya, James Kabengwa, Joseph Omollo, Micheal Woniala, Phoeobe Masongole, Tobbias Jolly Owiny, Joel Kaguta, Yahudu Kitunzi, Muzafaru Nsubuga, Joseph Omollo & Edson Kinene

Regions on Idd

KIBULI. At Kibuli Mosque, Prince Kassim Nakibinge, the titular head of the Kibuli-based Muslim faction, expressed concern on insecurity, kidnaps, violence and murder and asked government to act on the them.

In his message Kabaka Mutebi wished Muslims a happy Idd but to leaders, he said: "We continue to pray to Allah to wipe out murders and neglect (by leaders) of masses on the hardships they encounter."

MBALE. The district Khadi, Sheikh Issa Masaba, asked the Muslim fraternity to maintain peaceful co-existence in their respective communities so as to attain development.

TORORO. "I implore you to ensure that you compete for leadership positions to be able to influence policies that will support the growth of Muslim faith," the Tororo District Kadhi, Sheikh Ibrahim Asante Ragang, said.

GULU. Acholi Muslim Khadi Sheik Musa Kelil criticised the Muslim faithful over failure to support and defend the faith in the region.

KASESE: Sheikh Abdul Hakim Juma Killara, the District Kaditham, said the festival celebrates a prophet called Ibrahim (Abraham), who was told by Allah to sacrifice his son Ishamel (Ishmael) to prove his faith to Allah.

"Idd-ul-Aduha is a day of love, helping each other, sharing with those who don't have and should be a day of doing good deeds that pleases God," Sheikh Juma said.

BUTALEJA. "I call upon you Muslims to remain united for the good of our faith, families and nation. Let us preach peace and act accordingly," said Butaleja District Khadi Sheikh Swaibu Mukama.

KALUNGU. A number of Sheikhs who led in Idd-ul-Aduha prayers in Kalungu Distrct urged the government to put strict laws on traditional herbalists, who practise human sacrifice in which a number of innocent residents, especially children, have lost their lives.

LUKAYA. At Masjid Mariam in Lukaya, the Idd prayer was led by Sheikh Badru Wasajja Kiruuta, who in his preaching said acts of human sacrifice have increased in greater Masaka that put people on tension.

RUKUNGIRI. Kebisoni Town Mosque head Sowedi Munyefu asked Muslims to live a united, productive life in line with the teachings of the faith. "This is a day to reflect on our past lives, the promises we have made and fulfilled like Ibrahim."

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