Mom­basa Sheikhs and Imams listed to weed out rad­i­cals

Sen­a­tor hope­ful Ba­jaber says this will help the govern­ment iden­tify mosque lead­ers and end cases of mosques be­ing used as rad­i­cal­i­sa­tion grounds by ter­ror cells

The Star (Kenya) - - Front Page - MALEMBA MKONGO @malem­ba_mkongo

Sheikhs and imams in Mom­basa county are be­ing reg­is­tered to filter out imposters.

Mom­basa sen­a­tor hope­ful Yasser Ba­jaber said the aim is to get rid of “quacks”, who tar­nish the good name of the re­li­gious teach­ers.

The sheikhs and imams will be re­quired to pro­duce their birth and ed­u­ca­tion cer­tifi­cates.

Ba­jaber spoke after meet­ing re­li­gious lead­ers in Likoni on Monday. He said sheikhs and imams will ben­e­fit more after the regis­tra­tion is com­pleted. “The process will gen­er­ally help the govern­ment, the Is­lamic lead­ers’ coun­cil, the sheikhs and imams them­selves,” Ba­jaber said.

EASY IDEN­TI­FI­CA­TION

He said after the regis­tra­tion, the govern­ment will iden­tify lead­ers at the mosques. He said this will end cases of mosques be­ing used as re­cruit­ing and rad­i­cal­i­sa­tion grounds by ter­ror cells.

In 2013, po­lice raided mosques fol­low­ing in­for­ma­tion that youths were be­ing re­cruited. Weapons and al Shabaab flag were re­cov­ered.

Early this year, a madrassa in Likoni was closed after po­lice suspected the teacher of rad­i­cal­is­ing the chil­dren.

HELD RE­SPON­SI­BLE

An­other madrassa teacher was sen­tenced to 20 years in prison by a Mom­basa court for rad­i­cal­is­ing chil­dren at a mosque in Kil­ifi county.

“After this regis­tra­tion, po­lice will hold re­spon­si­ble the sheikh and imam reg­is­tered in that mosque,” Ba­jaber said.

He said the lead­ers will also be in charge of do­na­tions. Ba­jaber said they are ne­go­ti­at­ing with the govern­ment to pay them as they are also as­sist­ing in mould­ing young minds to fol­low the right re­li­gious path.

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