Ugandan Muslim leaders on Wednesday voiced anger over the perceived failure of the police to protect Muslim imams following the murder one day earlier of Sheikh Hassan Kirya.
Sheikh Hassan Kirya was gunned down on Tuesday night by unknown assailants, making him the 12th Muslim imam to be killed in Uganda in period of 2 years, Anadolu Agency reported.
Sheikh Hassan Kirya is the 4th Muslim Imam to be gunned down in Uganda since last December in the same execution style after being trailed by motor cyclists commonly known as boda boda’s and shot dead.
This brings the total number of Muslim leaders killings in Uganda in the past two years to twelve.
Addressing thousands of mourners who gathered at Kampala’s Kibuli Mosque, Sheikh Mahmood Kibaate, the acting supreme mufti, asserted: “We don’t fear dying because it [i.e., death] was meant for us all; but the way we are dying is what scares us.”
“We want to warn those killing our leaders: even if you do it ten times, when we retaliate, you will not enter the courts of law,” he added.
Sheikh Noor Muzaata, another Muslim imam who addressed the crowd, did not mince words.
“The end of Sheikh Kirya should not mean that we stop fighting those who are killing us,” he said.
Lashing out at both the government and police, Muzaata declared: “You say prevention is better than a cure, but nothing is being done to prevent these killings.”
He said Kirya had received death threats before his murder, but the police – who were told – did nothing about it.
“We gave you all the information, including suspects’ names, but you did nothing,” Muzaata said, addressing police.
“We told you these murderers had a list of people they were targeting, but all we see from the list we gave you are dead bodies,” he added.
Following last December’s murders, Muslim imams provided police with a list of six people they believed would be targeted.
Since then, two of those named on the list have been killed, while a third survived an assassination attempt.
Second Deputy Prime Minister Moses Ali, for his part, drew the ire of the already angry crowd when he said: “I know many sheikhs have been killed, but the government isn’t perfect. If you think the government is too weak and can’t manage, then vote them out during elections.”
Al Hajji Muhammad Kisambira the Secretary General of Uganda Muslim Supreme Council is however not satisfied with the Police’s efforts. “The last time the Inspector General of Police Gen. Kale Kaihura came here he said it was members of the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) that are behind these killings, but we have not seen anyone linked to the ADF brought before Court.”
“Justice delayed is justice denied, this has left us as Muslims even more scared.” He stresses.
Describing Kirya as a “freedom fighter” who opposed extremism, Inspector General of Police Gen. Kale Kaihura added: “We are not perfect. I acknowledge there was laxity with his protection. His bodyguard left him when he was breaking his [Ramadan] fast – that shouldn’t have happened.”
Islam is second largest religion after Christianity, Muslims representing 12% of the 38 million population of Uganda.. Tags: #Anti-Muslim #Muslim-minorities #Muslim-Scholars #
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