We must strive for peace and religious tolerance

Zaid Ebrahim, Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at, Rondebosch East

An unfortunate incident occurred at the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at on the evening of Tuesday February 9, at our mosque centre at the corner of Athlone Street and Manly Road, Rondebosch East.

On Wednesday morning February 10, we discovered that someone pelted the front wall, stoep and door area and side door and wall with eggs. This behaviour is absolutely obnoxious, especially now when communities are striving for peace, religious tolerance, togetherness and ubuntu during the deadly coronavirus pandemic.

More so than ever, communities need to come together to care and share, in hope, in healing and in harmony, despite the differences which may exist. Furthermore, people are suffering due to loss of jobs, and having no money to buy even a loaf of bread. Then we find senseless people wasting and destroying food – at least a dozen eggs. This is so sad. How shameful and ungrateful. May God have mercy on them.

After studying CCTV footage, this incident happened between the hours of 10.15pm and 10.20pm, on Tuesday February 9. A group of four vehicles stealthily drove past the mosque, and occupants in two of the vehicles suddenly threw eggs at the mosque building, leaving the spillage there.

Although nobody was injured, this has not been the first time that similar incidents have happened at our mosque centre, or to the residences of our members, and to the person of members themselves, and we often have not reported these types of incidents.

The incident may seem to be a minor one, but we, as a community that has suffered, because of its beliefs, various forms and degrees of persecution both in this country and abroad, know all too well how small incidents of violence and intolerance of any nature, if left unchecked and unacknowledged, can develop into more serious things.

It is true that our community has been making steady progress in the peaceful propagation of the message of Islam and in building friendly relationships across all religions in South Africa, especially in the fields of interfaith.

We are humbly approaching the Athlone News in this matter, and we hope and pray that you will stand with us in categorically condemning all such meaningless, distasteful and harmful acts and behaviour and continue supporting us in our goal of bringing people together from various backgrounds, and thus contributing to the building of a peaceful, tolerant and friendly society.