Prominent speakers and the public debated the way forward for Muslims following the uprisings in the Arab world.
On a freezing Sunday evening in Tooting, South London, almost 200 men and women gathered to launch Muslim Question Time’s inaugural event.
Muslim Question Time is a new forum launched to provide a public platform for all across London to debate and discuss issues that affect and concern Muslims locally and globally. Muslim Question Time is an open forum where members of the public can hear and contribute to a diverse spectrum of opinions from a panel of distinguished speakers.
The on-going revolutions in the Muslim World was an obvious focus for our first event, a subject matter that is close to the hearts of many and it provided for a very lively and informative debate.
Our first panel consisted of Sheikh Suleiman Ghani (Tooting Mosque Imam & Islam Channel presenter), Dr Kemal Helbawi (former spokesperson, Muslim Brotherhood), Karl Sharro (Writer, commentator and blogger on the Middle East) and Reda Pankhurst (Hizb-ut Tahrir). Dr Muhammad Omar, one of the founding members of Muslim Question Time chaired the proceedings.
Opinions came thick and fast regarding the cause of the recent revolutions, the way forward for the Muslim world and how Muslims in the UK could play a role in resolving these events.
Sheikh Suleiman Ghani proposed that we as a Muslim community need to go back to our Islamic roots and improve our morals and connection with Allah SWT so that He may reward us with a path out of these difficult times.
Dr Kemal Helbawi focused on finding solutions based upon the people’s public opinion in there respective countries and mentioned the Turkish model of governance as an example that works for the people in Turkey. He also mentioned that Muslims needed tarbiyyah to strengthen their resolve for an Islamic solution.
Karl Sharro, a humanist, proposed that the people’s will should dictate the system that should govern them and that he would back whatever system that may be, whether Islamic or secular.
Reda Pankhurst proposed a solution based upon Islamic principles from Qur’an and Sunnah, the Khilafah and gave examples of how this could be implemented in the Muslim world. He said that Muslims were ready for a radical change and had suffered under the current autocratic regimes and that the democratic systems had continuously failed them.
The predominant questions and comments from the audience focused upon the failure of the current regimes and dictators to secure peoples interests and showed a weariness of Western-backed solutions and a welcome for alternative solutions based upon Islam.
The event ended with each panelist summarizing their respective viewpoints.
Muslim Question Time is a bi-monthly event held across London please visit http://www.muslimqt.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org for details of upcoming events.