Translation by Aboo Aamir al-Atharee
People of elections do support their (stance as to participating in elections) with the statements of (the following Imams): Al-Albâni, Ibn Bâz and Ibn Uthaymeen; what is your view regarding that?
Praise to Allâh, peace and benedictions on the Messenger of Allah, his Companions and those who followed them. I testify that none is worthy of worship except Allâh, He has no partners, and I testify that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger.
People of elections are the enemies of these shaykhs. We used to hear in the Chamber for Institutes of Learning at Sanaa that Al-Albâni was a Mason after he gave a verdict to the Palestinian Muslims that they should leave their country because it had become Daar Al-Har'b (country at war). After he gave the verdict, they waged a war against him, they declared him as being lost and they said he was an innovator.
So also was the treatment they gave Shaykh Ibn Bâz (may Allâh be merciful unto him) when he gave the verdict regarding the Gulf Crisis (of 1991); they attacked him. When he also gave the verdict, if this was true from him, that there should be a peace pact with the Jews, they equally attacked him and criticized him. Among those who attacked him was Yûsuf Al-Qaradaawi – may Allâh not put blessing in him.
They (the people of elections) only want to destroy the People of Knowledge, they would not align with them unless when there was a need for their verdicts (to suit their whims). The hizbees would prefer their scholars such as Al-Qaradaawi and others, as for (the real) scholars (like Al-Albaani and others), they would not go to them rather they would seek to destroy them.
As for this particular verdict (on the permissibility of voting), I called Shaykh Al-Albâni over it and said to him: '(O Shaykh), why do you make elections permissible?' He replied: 'I never made it permissible, I only talked regarding taking lesser of two harms.' Then we looked at the issue whether there occurred a lesser evil in Algeria or what was greater in evil.
Read the biography of Abu Haneefah you will see that our scholars (of old) used to warn as regard (taking mere) opinions and discretions; they see taking mere opinions and discretions as the methods of the Mu'tazilites and the Jahmites.
As for the verdict of Shaykh Al-Albâni (may Allâh be merciful unto him), they had taken it long time ago; as for the verdict of Shaykh Ibn Uthaymeen (may Allâh be merciful unto him), it is wondrous that that he (Shaykh Ibn Uthaymeen) viewed (forming) parties and groupings as forbidden yet he made permissible what is worse and more dangerous that the former – elections which are the means to democracy.
I ask, o you confused ones, if these scholars were to retract their verdicts that will you retrace your steps too?
We view blind-following as forbidden; it is not for us to blind-follow anybody not Ash-Shaykh Al-Albâni nor Ash-Shaykh Ibn Bâz nor Ash-Shaykh Ibn Uthyameen, (may Allâh be merciful to all of them). Verily the People of Sunnah will not blind-follow (anybody).
Allâh the Mighty said:
"Follow what has been sent down unto you from your Lord (the Qur'ân and Prophet Muhammad's Sunnah), and follow not any Auliyâ' (protectors and helpers, etc. who might order you to associate partners in worship with Allâh), besides Him (Allâh). Little do you remember! [Al-A'râf: 3].
"And follow not (O man) that of which you have no knowledge…" [Isrâ: 36].
Then we will say to the Shaykh: This your verdict is indeed very dangerous; don't you know that (George) Bush (Jr) – may Allâh despise him – said when he was the President of the USA that Saudi Arabia and Kuwait do not apply (the rules of) democracy (in governance)?
Therefore, it is upon the scholars to reverse this verdict. As for me, I make you witnesses that I retract every mistake in my books, tapes and my calling to Allâh – the Mighty and Sublime; I reverse from all those with a pleased mind. As for the Shaykhs, there is nothing against them if they retract their view, in fact, it is obligatory upon them to retract their view because they do not know (the gravity of) what occurs in Yemen (and other places where democracy is in action like Nigeria!): what occurs in the parliaments in terms of evils attendant to elections such as killing and fighting, women coming out of their houses displaying their beauty, taking pictures of women, so also equating the Book of Allâh, the Sunnah of His Messenger - salaLlaahu alahy wa sallam - and the whole Deen of Islam with Kufr (unbelief). What therefore is the goodness these elections have brought for the Muslims?
It is obligatory upon the Shaykhs to retract their verdict, we shall communicate them Insha Allâh. If they do not retract their verdict, we make Allâh the Witness that we dissociate ourselves from their verdict because it opposes the Book and Sunnah, whether they are pleased or not; our dignity and blood we have ransomed for Islam and we do not care. Praise to Allâh.
As for the people (of elections), they are destroyed, they know that their statement has no worth. If you like, send someone who is not a hizbee, while people do not know, he will come to know that the Muslim Brotherhood (Ikhwaanul-Muslimoon) (and all their off-shoots all over the world) have got destroyed in Yemen. The glory of this goes back to Allâh, the Mighty and Most Sublime. The People of Sunnah view that commanding what is righteous and forbidding what is evil, retracting from evil, helping the oppressed and the brethren are duties bound on them.
We say to the Shaykhs: Were there elections in the time of the Prophet -salaLlaahu alahy wa sallam? When there was a difference opinion as regard the matter of Usâmah bn Zayd – that should he be the Amîr (of the army going to Rome) or not, did the Prophet -salaLlaahu alahy wa sallam - say: Let us vote; whoever has the largest votes will be the Amîr? Were there elections during the time of Abu Bakr and Umar (may Allâh be pleased with both)?
The report that came that AbdurRahman bn Auf (may Allâh be pleased with him) sought the consent of the people even the women in their homes (when Uthman [may allaah be pleased with him] was to be selected as the Khalifah); this report requires substantiation because it is not found in the Saheeh, its various paths must be collected together and I am very sure that when that is done, the report would be found out as being conflicting with superior reports in authenticity; any report of that nature is weak. Some of the brethren have made a research into the report and they found out that this addition (that AbdurRahman sought the consent of the people) is indeed very weak.
Were there elections during the reigns of the Umayyad, the Abbasid and the Ottomans? Didn't elections come to us from the enemies of Islam? The Prophet had indeed spoken the truth when he said: 'You shall follow the traditions of those before you step by step such that if they were to enter into the holes of dabb-lizards, you will do so.'
How did disunity, differing, enmity and hatred come within the ranks of the Muslims, even in a family set-up, if not through these elections?
The Muslim Brotherhood should pull our legs: don't they vote for a person who does not observe the Prayers while they say his intention is good; or don't they vote for an ignorant elderly person?
Aforetime, they induced people to vote in the first elections saying after them they would establish the Islamic governance! Where is the Islamic governance now? Where are their accomplishments in their constituencies? It was the Muslim Brotherhood that used to say: 'We would decide on a matter in the parliament then other matters would come, then we would leave with the (new) matters here and there.'
So fear Allâh, O Shaykhs; do not lead us to follow the US; do not lead us into democracy which makes permissible what Allâh has forbidden; the one that permits homosexuality in some of the Kufr countries; the one that permits all what is forbidden. We are Muslims, with us is the Book of our Lord:
"And verily, this is My Straight path, so follow it, and follow not (other) paths, for they will separate you away from His Path. This He has ordained for you that you may become Al-Muttaqûn."
Do we have a Deen different from the time gone by or is it the same Deen till the Day of Resurrection? The Messenger of Allâh -salaLlaahu alahy wa sallam - said:
'A group will not cease in my Ummah to be victorious upon the truth; they will not be harmed by whoever might belittle them. (This is how) they will be until Allâh's Command shall come to pass.'
We hope the Shaykhs will retract their verdict and we will see what these reformists will do.
Power is sought in Allâh.
Source: Tuhfatul-Mujeeb, p. 314.
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