Philip Kiew, firstname.lastname@example.org
LIMBANG: Maal Hijrah is a time for Muslims to take stock and renew their commitment to do better.
Head of State Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud said Muslims of today should emulate Prophet Muhammad P.B.U.H. and the four subsequent Caliphs after him in outlining in the ground-breaking Madinah Charter of Justice (Piagam Madinah), from which emerged the glory of Islamic civilisation and expansion.
“Hijrah is not just referring to the physical migration of a group of people from one place to another, but also symbolises a new movement or an outlook, given the history on the rise of Islam,” he said in his text speech prior to officiating at the state-level Maal Hijrah celebration here yesterday.
He stated that the all-inclusive and non-discriminatory Piagam Madinah, drafted in 622 AD, was the beginning of a new society that thrived beyond the shackles of politics among the Arab tribes as well as of surrounding powers of the Persians and the Romans, who felt threatened by this new order.
The Charter, he added, also marked a starting point of the new political and social structure of orderliness, fairness and equal rights.
“The Charter provided justice for all, irrespective of race or religion, which made his (Muhammad’s) leadership accepted by non-Muslim Arabs and Jews back then.”
Taib later presented the Maal Hijrah Awards to the eight exemplary recipients.
Earlier on, Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Adenan Satem said Islam had been all about inclusiveness and unity in diversity, ever since the momentous arrival of Muslims from Mecca, led by Prophet Muhammad, at Madinah that marked the beginning of the Islamic Hijrah calendar in 622 AD. He praised the Taib for practising the inherent spirit and values of Maal Hijrah among Sarawakians throughout his tenure chief minister.
“If there are disunity, splits and enmity, not a single thing could be achieved,” Adenan said in a text speech read by Second Minister of Resource Planning and Environment Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan.
Also present at the function were Taib’s wife Toh Puan Raghad Kurdi Taib, State Legislative Assembly Speaker Datuk Amar Mohd Asfia Awang Nassar, and Assistant Minister in Chief Minister’s Office (Islamic Affairs) Datuk Daud Abdul Rahman.