Ebrahim Raisolsadat, the President of the Islamic Republic of Iran has tipped Ugandans on engaging in conversations that can help them lift themselves from poverty.
During his visit to the Uganda Muslim Supreme Council (UMSC) Headquarters on Wednesday night, Mr Raisolsadat who delivered a heart full speech said Ugandans can use social gatherings and discuss problems that affect them.
“Apart from holding congregational prayers, Mosques could also be used as avenues where faithful could converge to address other societal Problems such as poverty, illiteracy, diseases, unemployment,” he said as he “cautions his listeners against cultural invasion by western powers, especially targeting the youth,”
He expressed his delight in meeting religious leaders from different denominations who are cooperating harmoniously under one forum. He also expressed his joy in meeting the enthusiastic youth who had gathered in large numbers to welcome him. “Meeting you in a mosque is a manifestation of being God fearing and of high spirituality,” he said.
Referring to the expanding economic and trade ties with Africa, he noted that the creation of export markets for Iranian knowledge-based products was provided with this trip and the African countries want Iran’s knowledge-based products.
There is a good field in Africa for the production of basic goods, he said, adding that activating the bartering mechanism was discussed to allow Iran to receive basic goods in exchange for providing petrochemical materials.
Scientific and technological ties were among the other topics pursued during this trip, and in this regard, an office to be familiar with Iranian technologies was opened in all three countries, he said,
Stressing that strengthening bilateral cooperation with African countries will lead to regional and international cooperation, President Raisi highlighted that Iran has a common position with these countries in combating unilateralism, moral anomalies, and organized crime.
He criticized them for being oppressors and plunderers of resources, as well as for promoting immorality such as homosexuality, which he deemed contrary to nature and divine laws (referring to European imperialists). President Raisi concluded his remarks by highlighting the common ground between Muslims and Christians, both Abrahamic religions that promote family values.
He also mentioned the Agreement of Cooperation signed between his government and the host government led by President Yoweri Kaguta Museveni. The event was attended by several dignitaries from various sectors of the country.
During this visit, the Iranian president was hosted by different religious leaders including Sheikh Shaban Ramadhan Mubaje, the Mufti of Uganda, who had been accompanied by other prominent religious leaders including the Most Rev. Stephen Samuel Kazimba Mugalu, Archbishop of the Church of Uganda, and the current Chairperson of the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda (IRCU).
President Raisi arrived at the UMSC headquarters with his entourage at around 10 pm amidst tight security. He was promptly ushered into the Mufti’s Office, where he held a closed meeting with government officials including Hon. Hajjat Lukia Nakadama Isanga, the 3rd Deputy Prime Minister; Hon. Hajjat Oleru Huda, State Minister of Defense in charge of Veteran Affairs; Hon. Muluri Mukasa, Minister of Public Service and Members of Parliament. Also present were Dr. Kazimba Mugalu, the Church of Uganda Archbishop; Sheikh Abdallah Ibrahim Ssemambo Tamusuza, the Deputy Mufti; Sheikh Muhammad Ali Waiswa, the 2nd Deputy Mufti; and Hon. Muhammad Ali Aluma, the UMSC Secretary General.
Other dignitaries were Prof. Adam Sebyala, the president of the Uganda Shia Ithna Ashari Muslim Community, Hon. Luyimbaazi Issah Katungulu, the African Youth Ambassador and USHAIMCO Secretary General among others.
After the meeting, President Raisi joined the Muslim congregation for Isha prayers led by Mufti Mubaje. Dr. Stephen Samuel Kazimba Mugalu delivered a speech on behalf of the Interreligious Council of Uganda (IRCU). He highlighted the background and achievements of the IRCU since its establishment in 2001 and called for closer cooperation with the Islamic Republic of Iran.
He applauded the president of the Republic of Uganda for having created a conducive environment that allows us to celebrate diversity, guarantee religious freedom, Intercultural dialogue, and cooperation among the various faiths and cultural groups within the county.
He outlined the partnership with the Islamic Republic of Iran dates way back to 2017 when the Inter-Religious Council of Uganda signed a memorandum of understanding with the Cultural Consulate of the Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran on the following;
- Faith-based cooperation to address peace, justice, education, and brotherhood.
- Improving the capacity and participation of religious leaders in creating an enabling environment for peaceful coexistence through interreligious and intersect collaboration, dialogue, and action.
- upgrading and expanding the knowledge of young people, students, scholars, and researchers through academic knowledge exchange of religions.
He requested the Iranian president for a religious visit to Iran to tour religious and holy places.
Mufti Mubaje expressed appreciation to the Iranian government for its recent reconciliation efforts with the Royal Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He also expressed prayers for peace in other Muslim countries still affected by armed conflicts, such as Palestine, Syria, Yemen, and Sudan.
Hon. Rukia Nakadama, the 3rd Prime Minister of the Republic of Uganda noted that his state visit to Uganda will open up more doors of cooperation in different sectors.
‘’Your visit is a strong sign of a good relationship between Uganda and the Islamic Republic of Iran and pray for extension of our ties, ‘’she noted.