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You are here: Home PERSPECTIVE EDITORIAL In his achievements and legacy, Gaddafi still lives

In his achievements and legacy, Gaddafi still lives

Like all tyrants, former Libyan leader Col. Muammar Al-Qaddafi denied his people their fundamental rights. He reportedly killed some and imprisoned others for disagreeing with him. He also trained, armed and bankrolled murderous guerrillas across Africa, including Yoweri Museveni in Uganda and Charles Taylor in Liberia. But Gaddafi also restored, perhaps more than he ruined, Libya and Africa at large.

He afforded for his people a standard of living that was hardly equaled in other developing countries. His reign left no poverty, ignorance, or disease in Libya. Even luxuries like driving were not unaffordable. Yet his contribution transcended Libya and enriched almost every part of Africa.

In Uganda, Col. Gaddafi constructed a mosque that is the envy for the rest of the world. The Gaddafi National Mosque at Old Kampala houses about 30,000 people. He constructed the Toro Kingdom Palace and invested in various businesses that continue to contribute to the development of the country. He invested in the National Housing and Construction Company, extending decent accommodation to many Ugandans. He invested in the Uganda Telecom Limited, a mobile network operator that provides not only communication services, but employs many citizens. 

Gaddafi also established the Tropical Bank, facilitated the foundation of a Muslim radio station (Voice of Africa) and a newspaper (Weekly Message – which collapsed at the hands of corrupt Ugandan managers) and spread Islam under the World Islamic Call Society. 

In other African countries – Rwanda, Kenya, Niger and others – Gaddafi established similar projects that continue to benefit Africans. In South Africa he reinforced the anti-Apartheid struggle. There were certainly traces of brutality in Gaddafi; but his generosity encompassed the whole continent. This is the man that the current Libyan government captured, dragged like a log, sodomised with sticks and knifes and finally shot in the head. He is the man whose corpse the government refused to dispose of in an honorable manner until it started rotting and stinking. This is the government that claims to be guided by Islam.

They claim allegiance to Islam when actually they ignore, and ignore entirely, the teachings of the noble religion. The Prophet Muhammad (may peace be upon him), whom these barbarians of Libya claim to follow, forbade cruelty even in killing. The Prophet is reported in Sahih Muslim to have said, “Verily Allah has enjoined goodness to everything; so when you kill, kill in a good way and when you slaughter, slaughter in a good way. So every one of you should sharpen his knife, and let the slaughtered animal die comfortably.”

Why didn’t they kill Gaddafi in a good way – as their Prophet taught? No living being, let alone human being, should be killed like Col. Gaddafi. His killers exhibited a level of barbarism that is hard to find in civilized people. They differed in no way from their pre-Islamic forefathers who buried their own daughters alive. It is unfortunate that such barbarians should identify themselves with Islam.

 

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