Khartoum, Sudan - A pro-government Islamic council in Sudan has issued a fatwa against opposition leaders who signed a document in Kampala, Uganda, last month that calls for the toppling of the government in Khartoum by force.
Mohamed Osman Salih, the head of the pro-government Islamic Sudan Scholars’ Council (SSC), accused signatories of the controversial New Dawn Charter (NDC) of atheism on the grounds that the document calls for separation of religion from the state.
Salih, the Secretary-General of the Khartoum-based Council, who issued the non-binding fatwa, was quoted by the Sudan News Agency as saying that the Charter contravened the Islamic tenets which said the ruler, “who is entrusted by God to rule the people” must apply sharia laws.
The Charter was signed by Al-Wasat Islamic Party leader Yusuf al-Koda, an eminent moderate Islamic scholar, who had earlier declared joining the opposition National Consensus Forces (NCF).
“Anyone who has signed this document has distanced himself from the Islamic faith and is no longer a Muslim,” Osman said.
Although the fatwa is not binding on the President, it still gives him leverage to act against the signatories.
Commenting on the fatwa, the opposition Popular Congress Party (PCP) spokesman said the fatwa was “part of the fierce media campaign” launched by the ruling NCP against the Charter and the opposition.