PM meets with Muslims following New Zealand terrorist attack
Prime Minister Dr. Keith Rowley has assured members of the Muslim community that the Government is committed to ensuring their right to protection and equal place in T&T.
Dr Rowley was speaking during a meeting with Muslim leaders at the Diplomatic Centre on Wednesday when he made the statement.
“I want to give you the assurance as Prime Minister and as head of the National Security Council that your claim to an equal place in this country is undisputed and greatly defended,” the Prime Minister said.
He added, “Trinidad and Tobago is the best place for you, your families, your religious brothers and sisters to be at this turbulent time. I know of no other country where the level of freedom to practice your religion, to accept equality by gender and to accept protection without question by the State. No other country has all these components available to its citizens in great doses … let us not take it for granted.”
The Prime Minister hosted the meeting in response to security concerns raised following the recent terrorist attack in New Zealand.
He told Muslim leaders that they have a right to demand protection but they also have a duty to condemn criminality in all its forms especially within their organisations wherever it may be found.
The Prime Minister told those gathered that they play an important role in holding the fabric of society together and encouraged them to let dignity and their religious principles guide them in rejecting wrongdoing.
Minister of National Security, Communications and Minister in the Office of the Prime Minister Stuart Young, Minister of Rural Development and Local Government Kazim Hosein, Minister of State in the Office of the Prime Minister Ayanna Webster-Roy, Commissioner of Police Gary Griffith and Acting Chief of Defence Staff, Group Captain Darryl Daniel were present for the meeting.
Heads of the Islamic Organizations present at Wednesday’s meeting:
Haji Yacoob Ali- President General ASJA and Members of the ASJA Executive
Mr Farz Khan- President TML and other Members of the TML
Rafeek Mohammed- General Secretary of the TIA
Mufti Wazim Khan – President of Darul Uloom
Mr Imtiaz Ali- President of the Takaaful T&T Friendly Society
Mr Zahir Nobee-President of TIN
Imam Kazim Ali – Chairman of the Imam Council
Mr Kwesi Atiba- President of the IRS
Mr Idris Mohammed -President of the Islamic Dawah Movement
Mr Zaahir Ali- President of ROU
Mr Asad Yacoobali- President of the Caribbean Dawah Association
Mr Hafeea Khan- President of the National Islamic Counselling Services
Mr Imtiaz Mohammed – President of the Islamic Missionaries Guild
Mr Inshan Ishamael – Head of IBN and Barakah Foundation
Mr Waheed Majeed- Secretary of ASWAJI
Mr Siddiq Ahmad Khan- Local Co-ordinator for Al-Hikmat
Imam Ahmadh Aziz- Head of the Abdul Aziz Trust
Maulana Sheraz Ali- Nur eIslam Jamaat
Maulana Ibrahim Bin Yacub – Amir and Missionary in Charge of Amadiyya Muslim Community of Trinidad and Tobago
Mr Mohummed Abdul Latif- from the Shia Community
Mr Yasin Abu Bakr – Head of the Jamaat Al Muslimeen
Mr David Mohammed- Head of the Nation of Islam Organization
Mrs Lydia Choate- President of Madinah House
Mrs Shaleeza Khan Ali -President of the Islamic Ladies Social & Cultural Association
Mrs Donna Ali- President of the National Muslim Women’s Association