Stop the Muslim Personal Law Bill

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To: The Minister of Justice
CC: Womens Legal Centre


It has come to our attention that an organization known as the Womens Legal Centre (WLC) has approached the Constitutional Court of South Africa in order to compel Parliament to enact laws regulating Muslim marriages.

The WLC purportedly seeks the protection of Muslim women, who, it pleads, are the victims of injustice within the boundaries of a marriage solemnized and regulated by laws embodied in the Holy Quran. Among the orders sought by the WLC are a declaration that Parliaments failure to enact law regulating Muslim marriages and the consequences thereof was unlawful; an order directing the government to enact legislation within 18 months that will recognize Muslim marriages as valid and regulate such marriages.

We, the undersigned, hereby express our objection to the application lodged by the Womens Legal Centre in the Constitutional Court.

We object to this action on the following grounds:
the WLC has no right to represent either the Muslim community in general or Muslim women;
the WLC has not been mandated by the greater Muslim community to speak on behalf of its women;
Muslim women are satisfied with the Shariah (divine laws of the Quraan);
the MPL Bill has numerous conflicts with out Shariah law and is not a representation thereof;
about 100 Muslim organizations from throughout the country, including the Jamiatul Ulama of SA, KZN, Eastern Cape and Gauteng; Association of Aalimaat (female theologians); The Pretoria Muslim Association; Islamic Female Teachers Group; and the Young Mens Muslim Association (Benoni) are opposed to the Bill becoming law;
the views of the general Muslim public were not actively sought during the drawing up of the Bill;
while the WLC appears to be clamouring for a Muslim Personal Law Bill, the WLC has remained silent regarding a Jewish Personal Law Bill or a Hindu Personal Law Bill.

We hereby demand that the WLC abandons its legal attempt to have laws imposed on us which are in conflict with our religious rights and Shariah. We also ask the Minister of Justice to reject any application made by the WLC with regards to this matter.

Then we established you on a Shariah with regard to (your affairs). Therefor follow it, and do not follow the base desires of those who do not know (what they are doing).