Malawi Muslim leaders bolt with money at Quran event

Some Muslims who were entrusted with a responsibility to distribute money meant for all people who attended the prize presentation ceremony to the winners in the National Quran Recitation competition on Sunday at Iqraa Propagation Centre (formally Apollo Cinema) in commercial capital Blantyre, abandoned the dictates of their faith and run away with the money leaving those who needed it most, grumbling, Nyasa Times has learnt.

The guest of honor at the ceremony, Sidick Mia  – Minister of Transport and Public Works – announced that he was giving K600, 000 to be distributed to the 300 people who patronized the ceremony. He said each person was supposed to be given K2, 000 to cater for transportation.

“I know that you are all 300 here, I have counted you all here because I like counting where ever I am. So I am giving out K600, 000 out of which each one of you will receive K2, 000 so that you should use it for transport,” said Mia amid deafening ululation from the Muslim community who gathered there.

Mia gave the cash to Sheikh Jafali Kawinga who took charge of the money sharing exercise by involving other ‘faithfuls’ to assist him with the task.

Kawinga in headgear his assitants disapointed him
Kawinga in headgear his assitants disapointed him

He entrusted the responsibility on four others whom he gave the money ranging from K100, 000 to K150, 000 each to distribute to the participants who were asked to get seated in their places until they receive the money.

Those given the task of distributing the money were Idrissa Kalisinje, a journalist with Malawi Broadcasting Corporation, Abdul Aziz  a journalist with Radio Islam, Hassan Mussa and a Sheikh only known by his surname Ndeketa.

Our sources said the good gesture was spoiled when some of the chosen ‘faithfuls’ ducked with the money after distributing the cash to few people under the pretext that they were going to collect some more money.

One disgruntled participant alleged that although some were seen distributing the money, Kalisinje for one, was never seen distributing a penny although he was one of those entrusted with the responsibility.

“It was disturbing news to Mia when he got reports that many participants didn’t receive the money because it was insufficient. But all in all he continued with his good gesture by giving some more additional money but still some people went home empty handed,” said the sources claiming he was one of those who did not receive the money.

The sources said when the issue came clear to the organizers and other Sheikhs that the some had run way or hidden the money, they agreed to bury it under the carpet to avoid tarnishing the image of their religion which teaches against ‘suspecting others of having done wrong things’ and instead they left everything in the hands of Allah [God].

National Holy Quran Competition is organised by Al Barakah Charity Trust every year. The aim of the event is to encourage young Muslims to read and memorise the Holy Quran.

This year’s event was the ninth, according to National Coordinator of the event Sheikh Amani Matiya.

Islam is the second largest religion in the southern African country after Christianity.

Official statistics suggest Muslims constitute 12 percent of Malawi’s 14 million people, but the umbrella Muslim Association of Malawi (MAM) puts the rate at 36.

Mia his good gesture ended in wrong hands
Mia his good gesture ended in wrong hands
The fuction was covered live by Radio Islam ,  other print and electronic journalists.. far left in front row
The fuction was covered live by Radio Islam , other print and electronic journalists.. far left in front row

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