The Muslim Judicial Council (SA) is deeply horrified by the horrendous and continuous attack on women and children. This grotesque scourge of violence has reached a National Crisis. Every single day we are bombarded with media reports of women and children being subjected to the most outrageous forms of abuse, showing the continued erosion of moral values within our communities.
The most recent data from the World Health Organization (WHO) shows that South Africa’s femicide rate is almost five times higher than the global average. This is deeply distressing and requires urgent intervention by all levels of government.
Therefore, we cannot remain silent. We can not merely condemn. Concrete substantive action needs to be taken by all sectors of society, to ensure that we rebuild the moral fabric of our communities. This goes beyond merely ensuring that the perpetrators are jailed for these heinous crimes. Collectively, we need to address the root causes of this moral erosion and unpack why a continuous culture of violence is prevalent in our communities.
Women do not feel safe. This is unacceptable.
It is, therefore, important for us to reflect on and emulate the character of our Beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAW), who mentions on the authority of Abū Hurairah (RA):
“The most complete of the believers in faith are those with the most excellent character, and the best of you are the best in behaviour to their women.”
We cannot be complacent as the aggression perpetrated against women and children intensifies and escalates. Moreover, we need to ensure we collectively engage in robust dialogue on why these repulsive manifestations of toxic masculinity, are so prevalent in our society.
South Africa is a signatory to a number of international treaties on Gender-Based Violence (GBV), and we have a strong legislative framework, which includes the Domestic Violence Act (DVA) (1998), the Sexual Offences Act (2007) and the Prevention and Combatting of Trafficking in Human Persons (2013) Act.
As a country, we need to reflect on why our laws are failing to adequately protect women and children. The Muslim Judicial Council (SA), therefore, calls on government to engage in a multi-faceted strategy that brings together an array of stakeholders to strengthen the response across sectors.
During this time of fear and great uncertainty, we encourage our community to find solace in Allah (swt) and engage in greater Athkar.
“If Allah should aid you, no one can overcome you; but if He should forsake you, who is there that can aid you after Him? And upon Allah let the believers rely.” (3:160).
The Muslim Judicial Council (SA) calls upon all Imams to make fervent dua for the safety and security of our Women and Children. We call on the Muslim community to increase in their Athkar, to give charity and to engage in Istighfaar.
May Allah (swt) stabilise our communities and grant safety and security to our women and children.
Issued by Shaykh Isgaak Taliep
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