one-time Imam Ratib of Gambia’s State House Mosque during former President
Yahya Jammeh’s regime said he is ready to face Imam Baba Leigh of Kanifing
Estate Mosque in debate on the country’s Islamic Council’s recent demand and
submission of a petition to the regulatory authority –PURA- to deny granting
television license to the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jamat in the country.
Imam Abdoulie Fatty told Paradise FM’s Kebba Camara in a recent interview at his Kotu residence that Imam Leigh should stop causing argument between religious leaders, saying anything that is denied by the countries Islamic leaders, Imam Leigh will start to against that. “Imam Baba Leigh is the one who supported family planning and female genital mutilation in the country when all the religious leaders condemned them.”
In one of his sermons during Muslims Friday congressional prayer at his Kanifing Estate Mosque this month, Imam Leigh said The Gambia Supreme Islamic Council (GSIC) reserves no reason both in the constitution and the Qur’an to petition against the issuance of television broadcasting license to Ahmadiyya Muslim Jammat in the country.
He said the Islamic Council argued that Ahmadiyya Jammat are outside of the Islamic pale and granting them license will allow them to pollute the mind of faithful Gambian Muslims but Mr. Leigh debunked that argument, saying if the Ahmadis truly wanted to pollute the minds of Muslims, they would have used the social media.
Supreme Islamic Council and the Ahmadiyya Jamat have not been in good terms for decades now. The council believes that Ahmadis are not practicing the true teachings of Islamic religion and fear that if they are given the platform to have free operation in the country they could pollute the minds of Muslims who, they say are truly practicing Islam.
“Ahmadis should not be granted TV license in the country because they are non-Muslims. No one would have quarried their demand to open TV in the country if they had identified themselves as non-Muslims. Ahmadis’ leader believed that their God writes, dreams, sleeps and intermarry, which Muslims does not believe in.” Imam Fatty was quoted as saying.
Fatty explained that he did not lead the funeral prayers of both his parents as he dedicated them to a different scholar as a form of respect as seen in our Muslim communities.
Some years ago, the people of Tallinding had a serious confrontation with the Ahmadiya when the Ahmadis wanted to bury one of their late members at the Muslim cemetery at Tallinding. The people of the area insisted that the body was not going to be buried at their cemetery because they did not share the same faith.
According to Imam Fatty, Pakistanis believe that Ahmadis are non-Muslims and are non-Muslims minorities in their country and Sheikh Muhammad Fadel Fadera wrote a book in 1966 advising Muslims to be careful of Ahmadis staying in The Gambia, expressing fear that one day people will hold knife against one another because of Ahmadis presence in the country.
He called on the Public Utility Regulatory Authority (PURA) to deny granting television license to the Ahmadis, telling Muslims “let the money not spoil our religion. Let us keep remembering what the Holy Qur’an teaches us.”