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City of Banjul
Saturday, October 31, 2020

Caliph Hydara: I’m ordained to abide by what Allah commands

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He said: “As the caliph, I am ordained to guide my people to always abide by what Allah commands us to do in the religion of Islam. That is my duty as the caliph general and head of the Sheriff. We should obey Allah and follow the teachings of our prophet, Muhammad [PBUH]. All the jinns and mankind are created to worship Allah alone.” 

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Caliph Hydara is standing trial at the Brikama Magistrates’ Court, together with the alkalo of Darsilami village, Buyeh Touray. The two community leaders are accused of disobedience to lawful order when they refused to observe the 2014 Eid ul-fitr – Muslim feast of Koriteh – on the state-sanctioned day. Both pleaded not guilty. 

Continuing his defence yesterday, Hydara said he led the village in observing the feast in accordance with the teaching of the religion of Islam, citing the Quran to back his point.

He added: “The prophet  [PBUH] also said if you see the moon on the 29th  day of the Ramadan, you can pray and if you do not see it on that day due to the cloud, then he said you can make it 30 days for avoidance of doubt. 

“We sighted the moon on Sunday, but we could not see it on that day. When we saw it on Monday, we decided to pray the following day. We prayed on the 29th day of the month of Ramadan, based on our sighting of the moon. And we believed that it was in accordance with the commandment of Islam, as we were told by the Prophet.”

“Who were you praying to on that day?” defence lawyer, Lamin Mboge said.

He replied: “We were only praying to our creator, Allah and none other than Allah, because if anybody prays to anyone other than Allah, Allah will punish you and throw you into hellfire.”

Asked whether he did not receive notification from the then State House imam, Abdoulie Fatty, with regards to the state’s announcement, Mr Hydara replied: 

“I don’t know Imam Abdoulie Fatty and I did not hear any message from him. I led the people of the village in prayer on Koriteh day because the imam was sick on that day. And, I did not receive any message from the imam himself.”


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