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Why the UMSC is considering New Constitutional Amendments, What Ugandan Moslems Need to Know


For over 21 years, Ugandan Muslims have yarned for Constitutional amendments but barking up at the wrong tree, however, it was until recently when the Uganda Supreme Muslim Council (UMSC) a body that governs Islamic affairs in Uganda announced their intentions to make constitutional amendments that got the Muslims thinking of their intention.

For the 14 million Muslim Ugandans, a Constitutional amendment lays questions and answers that will heal some of the wounded hearts of the believers or at least what brought about the situation in the first place. The why, when, what, where, and how the constitutional amendments will be made remains a key issue to unveil.

Fortunately or unfortunately, it has only been under the leadership of HE Mufti Shaban Ramandthan Mubajje, that the constitution has been thoroughly scrutinized and stood the test of time.

UMSC explains that for the past 21 years no Mufti would exceedingly lead the Islamic fraternity for more than four years, the political terrain was still uncertain especially during the inception of the council in 1972 in the reign of the late Idi Amin Dada and therefore every change of government meant change of leadership.

However, it’s during this current administration and government that the fraternity has been able to enjoy stability with two consecutive elections from the village to the national level and therefore giving chance to look at the weak areas and challenges.

UMSC notes, with all the expertise and elders around, a lot will be addressed in this new constitution though aware of the fact that not everyone is supportive of the process but focusing on the majority.

In the current constitution, among the many contested factors includes that which gives the supreme Mufti power over any Islamic property which he has since been accused of stealing and mismanagement, the levels of education or qualifications for one to acquire a certain position of leadership and last but not least the exclusion of women whom have been a strong pillar in the development of Islam which views and discussion to be held.

On answering the issues of how many know the constitution and how Muslims will participate in the process, UMSC notes that the constitution has never been alien to the Muslims and has for the past years been living with them but however through the villages, regions, and districts structures the council will be able to reach to all Muslims.

The process is still ongoing with meetings on how the entire issue will be conducted still indoors according to sources.
Sources however revealed that the entire process has been put into different factions including that of the Tabliq, Kibuli, Salaf not to complain of being left behind. However not guaranteed support to the current leadership.

UMSC guides that the government of Uganda can never at any time in life allow intertwining of the issues of the kingdom (Kibuli sect) in those of the central government (UMSC)

It should, however, be remembered that before his death in 1991, Price Badru Kakungulu leader of the Kibuli faction, had by December 5 1986 while Chairperson UMSC adopted in the first amendment that all Islamic leadership is placed under the Sheikhs and at the UMSC.

And though Kibuli broke up in 1991, the top leadership recognized world over is that of the UMSC and looking at the new constitution amendments Muslims may soon be able to witness a new Supreme leader.

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