The president of the Republic has denounced the commercialisation of Islam, saying it is forbidden and will not be accepted in The Gambia.
His Excellency Sheikh Professor Alhaji Yahya Jammeh was speaking Monday afternoon at State House grounds in Banjul, while distributing over 27,000 bags of sugar as Ramadan gift to Muslims all over the country.
The Gambian leader condemned what he called the commercialisation of death and the Quran recitation, something he emphasised strongly, will not be accepted.
He urged the Gambia Supreme Islamic Council to regulate it before it develops roots in society. "These two practices must stop. These are very bad practices that are spreading it tentacles in our society. What kind of Muslims are we? Now I am challenging the Supreme Islamic Council to regulate these practices. As religious leaders, you have a huge task and I want to see that all these are regulated," he said.
While emphasising strongly on the importance of the Holy Quran, the Gambian leader stressed that knowing and reading the Quran and without respect for Allah that knowledge is useless.
He continued: "You will realise nowadays people turn up in their large numbers attending rich people's funerals than the average people, and prefer attending Quran recitations where they anticipate to earn money and you don't mind you will not be able to accommodate everybody.
If you have faith in Allah, you should know that the way you are being affected is the same way that someone is also poor and there is a Surah in the Holy Quran which says that, one should not sell anything in the Quran.
Now if people commercialise the Holy Quran recitation and funerals that means they are doing business with the Quran. And if I talk they say I am attacking people, but these are things that are happening."
President Jammeh also stated that he will not tolerate any behavior or attitude that will portray this country negatively. "We should be contented with what we have and have faith in Allah and avoid taking what we don't have yet. If you don't have, maintain your faith in Allah because you don't know what would happen in the future," he advised.
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