The United Ulama Council of South Africa (UUCSA) held its annual general meeting in Lenasia, Johannesburg, on the 19th and 20th of November 2021. Meetings were held with stakeholders and matters of national importance were discussed.
DURBAN: The United Ulama Council of South Africa (UUCSA) provided a positive report back on its Masjidul Aqsa project in Durban last week.
Hosted by the Darul Ihsan Humanitarian Centre in Sea Cow Lake, on Wednesday evening, 29 September 2021, it was revealed that over R3 million was raised to help assist one of Islam’s most sacred sites.
UCCSA has been working with Turkish-based non-profit organisation, Mimbar Al-Aqsa Foundation, for most of this year to raise awareness regarding the daily struggles of the Palestinian people in accessing the masjid in Jerusalem’s old city and also the challenges they face in teaching Quraan due to tough restrictions imposed by the Israelis.
The President Mr. Cyril Ramaphosa met with religious leaders from across the country on the eve of 13th July 2021. Approximately seventy participants from various faith groups attended the virtual meeting. He spoke about the plunder and pillage, the unprecedented cost to lives and to the economy. He said that this was part of the work of counter revolutionaries aimed at making the country ungovernable.
The Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula in her address spoke about the deployment of the SANDF to various hotspots around KZN and Gauteng provinces; she spoke about how the security cluster prevented the planned take -over of some of the airports by acting on information received from the intelligence. Religious leaders brought up the following:
- Where was the Intelligence apparatus of the state? Why was it unable to sound the alarm bells?
- The South African Police Services were hopelessly outnumbered; some are even alleged to be complicit in looting.
- The belated deployment of the military was equally disheartening.
The United Ulama Council of South Africa (UUCSA) made the following five requests to the President:
- The government has seen it fit to open gyms and restaurants but has unfortunately not permitted the opening of religious places. This under plays the role of religion and prayer in dealing with the multiple crises that we face in South Africa. The situation demands that places of prayer are opened immediately with appropriate restrictions.
- The mobilisation of the SANDF has to be increased so that their presence is made more visible especially in the various hotspots.
- The process of holding the perpetrators criminally liable has to be accelerated so that justice is seen to be done and so that the criminals realize that there are consequences to law-breaking.
- We suggest that hotlines be introduced in hotspot areas so that people may be able to petition for help in cases of impending danger.
- Our tragic experience calls for a review of the proposed changes to the firearms control act which include removing self-defence as valid reason to own a gun. Why would government want to disarm and render society totally defenceless?
The President undertook to review the ban on religious gatherings and expressed his appreciation to the forum for the positive engagement.
Freedom for Religion South Africa (FORSA) had requested a meeting with the Deputy Minister of Justice to discuss the PEPUDA Bill. Eighteen participants from various faith groups and personnel from the Department of Justice attended the virtual meeting on the 7th July 2021. The Deputy Minister had the opportunity to listen first hand, to concerns raised by faith communities. It is estimated that the Department has received approximately 150 000 submissions objecting to the PEPUDA Bill. The avalanche of submissions has clearly demonstrated to the Department of Justice that the faith community is dismayed at the attempted imposition of a straitjacket ideology which may promote conflict rather than reduce it. The Deputy Minister was somewhat perturbed that the invitation to comment on the Bill had been used instead, to carry out a referendum. He however intimated that a clause may be included in the Bill which will provide specific protection of religious rights. It remains to be seen what this will consist of and the level of protection it will give to those who give public expression to the teachings of their faith.
The United Ulama Council of South Africa (UUCSA) held its quarterly meeting in Durban on the 17 and 18 of May 2021, wherein various matters of national importance were discussed.
Delegates representing eight of the nine members; the Muslim Judicial Council (MJC), Jamiatul Ulama KZN (JUKZN), Sunni Jamiatul Ulama (SJU), Sunni Ulama Council (SUC), Cape Town, Ulama Board (CTUB), Darul Ihsan Humanitarian Centre (DIHC), Jamiatul Ulama South Africa (JUSA) and the Council of Ulama Eastern Cape (CUEC) attended the two day meeting in Durban. The Northern Cape Ulama Council (NCUC) could not be present.
Key points of discussion included the following:
• Comprehensive sexuality education in schools
• The proposed single marriage statute
• The need to enhance integration and participation of indigenous Ulama within the structures of affiliate members
• Challenges in Hilaal sighting that may compromise unity in South Arica
• The uncertainty around the upcoming Hajj season
• The 100 day Palestine Awareness Program.
UUCSA also embarked on strategic stakeholder engagement. It met with:
• The Islamic Medical Association of South Africa – (Durban Chapter)
• The Association of Muslim Schools – (Durban Chapter)
• The Minarah Chamber of Commerce
"Alhumdulillah, we enjoyed very productive and robust discussions over the two day period. We thank our hosts, the Sunni Jamiatul Ulama for their hospitality. We humbly beseech your support and duas for the success of UUCSA" said Maulana Abdul Khaliq Allie; the President of UUCSA.
The aim of UUCSA is to unitedly work towards the preservation, promotion and protection of Muslim identity and interest in South Africa.
26 May 2021