A prominent Egyptian scholar issued a religious edict that prohibited the marriage of Egyptian women to members of the former ruling National Democratic Party (NDP), citing corruption and dishonesty.
No Egyptian man is allowed to marry his daughter off to a member of the NDP under any circumstances, said Sheikh Omar Setouhi, secretary general of the Committee for Islamic Preaching at al-Azhar, the world’s leading institution of Sunni Islam.
“They are dishonest and if they proved unworthy of the trust given to them on the national level, they definitely cannot be trusted on the personal level,” he said in a statement published Saturday in the Egyptian newspaper al-Youm al-Sabea.
Setouhi explained that if members of the now dissolved NDP were ungrateful to the country to which they belong and which has provided them with security and a good life, they will very easily betray their wives and families.
Setouhi cited a saying by Othman ibn Affan, the third Muslim Caliph, in response to a question he was asked about the qualities of a good husband: “Marry her off to an honest man who will treat her with respect if he loves her and will never do her wrong if he hates her.”
The Azhar scholar issued an earlier and quite similar fatwa that bans Muslims from voting to “remnants” of the former regime in the upcoming parliamentary elections, the Egyptian newspaper al-Shaab reported Thursday.
“Egyptians who love their country should not vote for those who corrupted political life and tarnished Egypt’s image all over the world,” he said in a statement.
This prohibition, he added, applies particularly to former NDP members who have proven to be corrupt.
“Members who have a history of harming Egypt and manage to run in the next elections might fake love for Egypt, but this will not be true. They will never forget what happened to them and will remain vindictive and sly.”
Setouhi added that former NDP members will only run in the elections to serve their personal interests and not the country’s.
He cited a saying by Prophet Mohammed (pbuh) and which states that “a true believer cannot be deceived twice.”
Setouhi called upon Egyptian voters not to fall in this trap and to be careful who they choose to represent them.
“Anyone who votes for them will be a traitor to his country and his religion because he will be taking part in this deceit,” he concluded.
Sheikh Ali Abul Hassan, former chairman of al-Azhar’s Fatwa Committee, which is in charge of issuing religious edicts, agreed with Setouhi’s fatwa, the paper reported Thursday.
“NDP members helped a tyrant in oppressing his people and those people rebelled against him, so it doesn’t make sense that we choose the corrupt,” he said in a statement.
“This is not about curbing people’s freedom to choose who they want, but about people who committed actions against the laws of God and that is why they should not be elected even if they are efficient in one way or another.”
(This article was translated from Arabic by Sonia Farid.)