Qibla leader Imam Achmad Cassiem in conversation with Khalid Shamis.
“When the founder of the Pan Africanist Congress (PAC), Robert Sobukwe, came to Cape Town, specifically to Kensington and Ndabeni, he said at the launch of the branches in those areas, that Muslims are sitting on the blueprint but they’re not implementing it. Now, this is the first time then in the history of the struggle in South Africa, against colonialism and against apartheid, where a leader of a secular political organisation was sent to Muslims, and said we’re sitting on a blueprint and we’re not implementing it. When we reviewed the basic principles and the founding documents of the PAC you notice that they espouse one human race, anti-racism, and obviously, anti-racialism. The difference being that racism is statutory based and racialism is when you discriminate against people based on your own whims and fancies. So, there was now the common linkage between the Muslims’ ideological principles dating back to the revelation of the Qur’an and the principles of the PAC)”
This article features in a special, Arabic-only edition of the Chronic, published in June 2015 as “Muzmin”. The issue, which examines the division of “North” and “sub-Saharan” Africa and Ali Mazrui’s concept of “Afrabia”, was designed in collaboration with Studio Safar (Beirut) and presented at the 12th edition of Sharjah Biennial.