Georgetown, GINA, July 30, 2011 - President Bharrat Jagdeo today expressed satisfaction over the level of tolerance that Guyanese now enjoy. He said this could have only happened if there are enlightened leaders and, organisations such as the Central Islamic Organisation (CIOG).
Speaking at the opening of the Masjid Al-Nur, Islamic
Center, located in one of the newest housing schemes, Parfaite Harmonie, Region
Three, President Jagdeo expressed pleasure that the scheme has gotten such a
wonderful building and that he is also pleased CIOG is already thinking about
how this House of God can be used, not just as a place of worship and for
Muslims but a place of service to the residents of the West Bank Demerara
The link takes you to some movie clips showing the construction of Ruimveldt New Mosque, Alexander Village, Guyana.
These silent movie clips were recorded by Brother Rasheed Khan (Son of the late Mohamed Shaheed Khan) and who now resides in Barrie, Ontario. Without his preservation of these priceless movie clips, we would not have anything to show our newer generation of the timeless efforts taken in building this Masjid from the beginning and also to be able to see some of the older generations whom have all passed away and trust that Allah will grant their souls a resting place in Paradise (O ye people, praise Allah. Whoever builds a mosque for Allah The Exalted, he shall build a house for such a one in paradise).
Six Guyanese Made the Haj in 1949
In 1949, the following Muslims of the former British colony, British Guiana, and close associates of the
Anjuman-E-Islam and the Muslim Association of British Guiana performed the Haj pilgrimage to Mecca:
Al Haj and Hajjah Ghulam Abbas
Al Haj and Hajjah M. I. Dookhie
Al Haj Karamat Khan
Al Haj Ramjohn (Ramzan);
It is noted in the publication, Islam and Nur-E-Islam (January 1950), the official organ of the United Sadr Anjuman-E-Islam of Guyana that Haji Ramjohn upon his return of the haj attended the all Guiana Muslim Conference and delivered an address to the gathering of this visit to the holy land.
Gafoors has become a household name in Guyana, but standing tall behind this empire is a simple, private man, who has braved many storms to become one of Guyanas most successful businessmen, turning a small business of two employees into a conglomerate deserving of national pride. Reservedly, he agreed to share his climb to success with the Times Magazine . Born in 1941 at No. 59 Village, Corentyne, the Executive Chairman of Gafoors Industries Limited, Sattaur Gafoor is the eldest of seven children, and received his early schooling in Berbice.
Seeking better educational opportunities for their children, his parents came to the city in May 1953, around the same time the British Guyana Constitution was suspended, and he was enrolled at the Central High School where he completed his secondary education after sitting the Senior Cambridge and Higher Senior Cambridge Examinations of the time.
Upon arrival in Georgetown, his father opened the doors to the first Gafoors store on Lombard and Sussex Streets, which employed a clerk and a porter.
For Sattaur the choices after school were limited, because it was expected of the eldest child in those days that he maintain tradition and join his father in business.
Ayube Ahamad Khan, MS, AA, better known as Ayube Hamid, former Programme Manager and Sales and Marketing Manager of the Guyana Broadcasting Corporation, died on January 21, aged 82. Ayube Hamid was the best known, longest-serving and most versatile broadcaster this country has known. He recalled, nevertheless, that the most memorable moments of his life were spent not before the microphones in Demerara but 14,000 km away in Meerut, in Uttar Pradesh, India.
The following is the introduction to a privately-published book entitled, 'A Short History and Genealogy of an Indian Indentured Labourer in Guyana: Haji McDoom and his Descendants, 1884-2008'. The book was inspired by the passing of Haji McDoom's great grand-son, Shahabudin Mohamed McDoom. The book tells the story of the arrival of a young Muslim Indian in Guyana in 1884 and records his nearly 1000 descendants over six generations. It contains interesting information about one of Guyana's early Muslim communities. A copy of the book was entrusted to each family line to ensure the history and heritage it records is not lost. Its author, Omar Shahabudin McDoom, kindly agreed for us to publish its introduction.
Shahabudin Mohamed McDoom passed away in London on March 8th 2008 at the age of 62. Since 2006 he had been battling myelofibrosis, a rare disorder of the bone marrow. Shahabudin was a man of strong convictions that he used in his service to Guyana and to his faith. He had served on the country's Ethnic Relations Commission and its Constitutional Reform Commission as the Muslim community representative. He was passionate about his country, his religion, and his family.
The youngest of five children, Shahabudin, a graduate of Queens College, left Guyana in 1969 to seek opportunity overseas. He chose London, where he showed an aptitude for law and graduated in the top five in the Law Society Finals for his year. It is there that he also married Leila Rookmin Kishna, one of his former students from Indians Education Trust College. He was active within the Guyanese Muslim community in London and helped to establish one of the community's first mosques. After working as a Crown Court Prosecutor in the government's legal service he took early retirement. He chose then to re-direct his energy to the country of his birth.
In Guyana Shahabudin quickly became active in public service again. He applied his legal training as an advocate to tackle one of Guyana's thornier issues: race relations. He also became active in the Muslim community once again, serving on the Central Executive Council of the Central Islamic Organization (CIOG) and as its representative on the Inter-Religious Organization. Shahabudin had an appetite for public debate and was not afraid to engage difficult ethical and political issues. He was a skilled orator and often spoke on public and religious occasions. He made frequent appearances on the weekly television programme, Islam and You. He was also a prolific writer and engaged in lively exchanges of opinion through the newspapers. Shahabudin loved and promoted his country. He was well-known for engaging Guyanese and non-Guyanese alike in lengthy discussions over the country's politics and future trajectory. And after 9/11, at a time when the climate became tinged with fear of Islamic extremism, he remained proud of his Muslim identity.
Shahabudin also believed deeply in the importance of preserving cultural heritage. He strove to maintain Guyana's first stone mosque in McDoom, East Bank Demarara, as well as the McDoom family's first house. Both had been built by his grandfather, the Honourable Caramat Ali McDoom (1890-1950).