Praise be to Allaah, the Lord of the worlds. May the peace and blessings of Allaah be upon Muhammad, His last Messenger, his household, his companions and all those who follow him till the Last Day.
This edition heralds Ramadan 1432AH, so we shall proffer some suggestions on how best to prepare for the blessed month. Permit some brief words about the raging topic of the moment: Islamic Banking. Islamic Banking faces two critical challenges: taunts and opposition. Contrary to your presumption, the Muslims are the real opposition to Islamic Banking, the others merely taunt us. They taunt us with illogical arguments, scaremongering, outright falsehood and dubious diversion. Pay scant attention to them; even they know that the battle against Islamic Banking was lost (and had been won) since 1991 when the Banks and Other Financial Institutions Act was amended to il w for profit and loss sharing bank or what is commonly referred to as non-interest banking.
Since the battle was won two decades ago, why the threat of fire and brimstone. now? Simply because we, the Muslims, have been in steadfast opposition to Islamic Banking! Let it be known that what the Central Bank did recently is to fine-tune the operating guidelines for Shariah-compliant non-interest banks. And that really isn't a great step forward in actualizing Islamic Banking in Nigeria. The AlP [approval-inprinciple] that are touted had been granted even before now! The great step forward towards the realization of Islamic Banking has to be taken by the Muslims either by collectively demanding it or by a select of them making bold to provide those services however, what have we done? We have has opposed Islamic Banking strenuously with ignorance, lack of commitment and utter disinterest.
With feigned ignorance, we continue to patronize and aid riba-based banks [a.k.a conventional banks] claiming that we have no choice of safe deposit for our funds. Since we have embraced and continue to make Islamic Banking a reality! And with every passing day, we continue to oppose it with our ‘joyous’ consumption and aiding of riba, a sin so major and heinous that it is worse than committing adultery with one’s own mother!!! That our faith gets rejuvenated and we all strive to become better at serving our Creator, Allah, the Lord of the worlds. This Ramadan, recite and contemplate on the Qur’aan as much as you can; stand up everynight in qiyaamul-layl and humble yourself before Allaah, be profuse with giving both zakaah and sadaqah and always moisten your lips with the remembrance of Allaah.
There’s still one more thing to do as you improve your eeman this Ramadan: resolve to forsake riba and embrace the Shariah-compliant banking! Our eemaan demands it and our commitment must show it. We need many Shariah-compliant banks to open up and thrive. So if you are a Muslim investor, join others to set up our bank(s) and for the rest of us, once our banks are up and running, there is no further necessity that will make you keep your money in conventional banks. In fact, dealing with them becomes haraam and a grave sin, just as not transacting with shariah-compliant banks will be. So it is time to turn our opposition to support and ensure that our faith and our money are in sync, just as Allah and His Messeenger demand from us.
This article was culled from the publications of Deen Communication Limited