PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has sent a congratulatory message to the Muslim community on the celebration of the nine days of sacrifice, Eid al-Adha.
Zimbabwean Muslims joined their colleagues across the globe in celebrating Eid al-Adha, which was marked with the sacrificial killing of cattle, sheep and goats as part of the ceremony.
The meat was distributed to orphans and the less privileged.
In a message on his official Twitter account on Wednesday, President Mnangagwa urged the nation to be peaceful as taught by all religions.
He said, “I would like to wish Eid Mubarak to all those celebrating the Islamic holy day of Eid al-Adha, remembering its messages of sacrifice & faith. During this crucial time in our history, let us remember another basic teaching of all religions; that peace is paramount.”
In response to the President’s tweet, Sheik Muhamed Rasheed said: “Allah be with you my President and thank you for your kind words. The Muslim community will be giving free meals at all mosques today (Wednesday) during the Eid Aftar which is the festival of sacrifice and we will be welcoming all people to come and pray with us and feast.”
Supreme Council of the Islamic Affairs in Zimbabwe president Sheikh Ishmail Duwa also thanked President Mnangagwa for promoting religious tolerance and freedom of religion.
“We would like to thank President Mnangagwa for that message during the nine days of sacrificing animals. It’s the first time a President has shown tolerance to Muslims, since the country’s independence,” he said.
“President Mnangagwa is embracing everyone despite religion, tribe or race. We are grateful for the President’s gesture.”
Sheikh Duwa explained that Eid al-Adha was a symbolic act of sacrificing an animal as a way of “re-enacting” what Prophet Ibrahim did (by following Allah’s command to sacrifice his son, Ismail).
He said Eid al-Adha was a time for believers to reflect on what it means to be a Muslim.
“Spilling the blood of the animals that we sacrifice goes beyond just trying to please our Creator but, rather, is a way to clean our hearts from the sicknesses of insincerity. Every Muslim should know that we are responsible for what we do in our lives.
“This means that we make choices in lives through the faculty of intention that Allah gave us. Our intentions are, therefore, the driving force behind our outward actions.
“As Allah says in the Qur’an: “Say: Verily, my prayers, my sacrifice, my life, and my death are for Allah, the Lord of All the Worlds.” (6:162). The above Qur’anic declaration summarises the mission, purpose and motivation in our lives as Muslims.”
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