The Muslims Association of Malawi (MAM) has issued a statement condemning Sheikh Mdala Ali Tambuli and human rights activists who are pushing for the legalization of homosexuality in the country.
MAM claims that homosexuality is not only evil and sinful but also illegal and criminalized under Sections 153 and 156 of the Penal Code (Laws of Malawi), “therefore, supporting, aiding or abetting of any illegal activities constitutes crime.”
The statement follows Sheikh Tambuli’s remarks published in Nation on Sunday newspaper regarding homosexuality as views of the Sheikhs in the country. Sheikh Tambuli, just like some human rights activists, told the paper that it was high time homosexuality was legalized for the betterment of minority groups in the country.
“MAM is deeply dismayed as it did not expect that a learned Sheikh who should have known under any circumstances the true position of the Islamic religion on the issue of homosexuality would issue such a statement.
“As a national body, MAM wishes to condemn in its strongest terms the statement allegedly expressed by Sheikh Mdala Ali Tambuli and describes it as baseless, senseless, misleading incorrect and irrelevant to the Quran and the teachings of Islam,” reads the statement in part.
The Islamic body further reminds the general public and “other fair minded Sheikhs” in the country that homosexuality is clearly categorized in the Holy Quran as evil and sinful as evidently seen in the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah during the time of Lut (Lot) when such immoral acts were being practiced.
“If indeed Allah wanted to guarantee the so called human rights to the homosexuals then He (Allah) should not have punished and destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah.
“Homosexuality is wrong under the generally accepted customs and habits of the Muslim society in Malawi and elsewhere in the world. Culturally, the practice is evil and totally unacceptable. Supporting it, therefore contradicts our cultural values and beliefs which are also guaranteed in the African Charter on Peoples ad Human Rights (ACPHR) which adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) to an African context,” says MAM.
The statement is also urging all Sheikhs in the country to respect the hierarchy which is established through national associations and other bodies in Malawi by not making comments or statements on issues of national interest without consulting or seeking consent from the national organs which have jurisdiction to take such action.
While acknowledging the important role the media plays in the country, MAM also says media personnel can continue enjoying the trust and confidence of the general public in Malawi only if it discharges its duties professionally and in compliance with the laid down ethics of their profession by balancing up their stories through verification with other sources before publishing or airing them.