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Awori ejected from mosque

By Vision Reporter

Added 27th December 2000 03:00 AM

Presidential aspirant Aggrey Awori was yesterday thrown out of the Bombo mosque by Muslims during Idd el-fitr prayers.

Presidential aspirant Aggrey Awori was yesterday thrown out of the Bombo mosque by Muslims during Idd el-fitr prayers.

 Mufti calls for unity By Frederick Kiwanuka and Emmy Allio Presidential aspirant Aggrey Awori was yesterday thrown out of the Bombo mosque by Muslims during Idd el-fitr prayers. Awori entered the mosque unnoticed at around 9:30am wearing a white tunic and a cap. He was accompanied by the headmaster of Luwero SS, Ignatius Koomu, who is aspiring for the Luwero LC5 chair. The saga started when Sheikh Ahmed Taibu, the leader of the Bombo College of Sheikhs, noticed Awori seated on the front row, which is often preserved for sheikhs. Taibu asked Awori to go out, saying he had not informed them about his coming. Taibu said in Luganda, "How did you enter here, sir? Will you please get out." Awori, who travelled to Bombo in a green saloon car, obeyed and went out without saying anything. He waited outside for a while but re-entered the mosque and tried to greet the congregation. But as he tried to speak, a struggle broke out over the microphone between Taibu and the leader of the Tabliq sect, Mansour Hussein, who wanted Awori to address the people. This interrupted Sheikh Abdul Majid's sermon and prayers by the Imam, Sheikh Abdul Doko. "Taibu asked Hussein to stop interfering, but he refused. This forced Mwalimu Abdulhaman to jump up to stop the Tabliq leader. Another Tabliq member, Musa Saye, also jumped up to struggle for the microphone. The whole mosque was then filled with 'hot' words," said a sheikh who was in the mosque. Awori's aide, John Okumu, said Awori was not responsible for the chaos. "We were not responsible for the crisis inside. The presidential aspirant later spoke to Muslims outside the mosque," Okumu said. The Awori saga seemed a continuation of the crisis at the newly-refurbished Bombo mosque, which the Tabliq sect wants to grab from the old leadership, mostly Nubians, who control it. Meanwhile, Edris Kisambira reports that the Mufti, Sheikh Shaban Ramathan Mubajje, has said his first mission is unity to enable Muslims work as a family. Mubajje, who led Idd el-Fitr prayers at Old Kampala, the seat of the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC), congratulated Muslims upon the completion of the Ramadhan. "We thank the almighty Allah who enabled us fast in the holy month. As it is required of every believer to fear God, so it is required of him to do good towards fellow men," he said. Mubajje likened his election as Mufti to the war of Alli-Badiri in the Koran, which was won during Ramadhan. He said this should bring with it peace and respect to Islam. "We are therefore confident that peace and unity will come to the Ugandan Muslims as the UMSC elections were conducted in the Holy Month of Ramadhan," he said. Mubajje asked Muslims to participate in the coming presidentila elections. "Let me once again call upon every Muslim in Uganda to participate fully in the pending general elections and I urge you to vote wisely," he said. He allayed fears that political interests would interfere in the affairs of Islam. In Kibuli, leaders of all Muslim sects were yesterday hosted to a party by Prince Kassim Nakibinge, reports AG Musamali and Solomon Muyita. The party was attended by the Mufti. Meanwhile, Sheikh Sulaiman Kakeeto of the Nakasero Tabliq sect, who led the prayers at the Clock Tower ground, said they were committed to unity. "This was the main hope we had in the just concluded (UMSC) elections," he said. Kakeeto said all breakaway sects were free to return. "We are not setting any conditions for the return of our brothers. They are welcome to join the Ummah any time," Kakeeto said. He thanked the Government for the amnesty extended to the Moslems who were in prison. Ends.

Awori ejected from mosque

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