The Grand Mufti of Zimbabwe Ismail Musa Menk has arrived in Uganda for Charity Visit Dinner organized by Imnaq Social Development and DAAWA.
The Mufti, who arrived yesterday, is expected to meet President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, the Supreme Mufti of Uganda Sheikh Shaban Ramadhan Mubajje and lay the foundation stone of Musa Islamic Centre.
He is expected to be guided around various tourism centers, National parks and the source of the Nile. He will on Wednesday attend the Inauguration of Musa Quran Memorisation Centre at the National Mosque in Old Kampala.
Menk was born in Harare, where he undertook his initial Islamic studies with his father, Maulana Musa Menk, memorizing the Quran and learning Arabic, Urdu and Hanafi fiqh. He subsequently studied at the Islamic University of Madinah. He completed his Islamic studies and became a Mufti in the Hanafi fiqh at Dār Al-‘Ulūm Kantharia, Gujurat, India. Menk is known especially in eastern Africa and teaches internationally.
Menk opposes terrorism and has pledged his aid in curbing religious extremism in the Maldives. On March 31, 2018, he urged Liberian Muslims to avoid Muslim-Christian violence, arguing that Muslims and Christians are brothers and sisters from one father, the prophet Adam. He blames western media for misleading the world that Muslims are generally terrorists. According to Gulf News, Menk said that everyone on this earth is a part of a family and has one maker; therefore, no one has the right to force any belief or faith on another.
In 2013, he was due to visit six British universities Oxford, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Cardiff and Glasgow – but the speaking tour was cancelled after student unions and university officials expressed concern about his views. Menk’s controversial statement included these words: “How can you engage in acts of immorality with the same sex?. The Qur’an clearly says it is wrong what you are doing… Allah speaks about how filthy this is. With all due respect to the animals, [homosexuals] are worse than animals.
On 31 October 2017, Singapore banned Menk from its borders because it believes he expresses views incompatible with its multicultural laws and policies. According to the Straits Times, he has asserted that “it is blasphemous for Muslims to greet believers of other faiths during festivals such as Christmas or Deepavali”.
Singapore’s Ministry of Home Affairs said in a statement that its decision to reject Menk’s application for a short-term work pass stemmed from his “segregationist and divisive teachings”. The Majlisul Ulama Zimbabwe, Menk’s own institution, released a statement to express “regret and dismay” regarding the ban. It said that Menk was an “asset to multi‐cultural, multi‐religious Zimbabwe” and that viewers should “listen to his sermons in full” and not “edited clips of a few minutes” to see the moderate path he has chosen.
In November 2018, the Danish government banned Menk from entering its borders.