As I predicted a few days ago in response to Madeleine Bunting’s Guardian article, Mohammed Amin – the only declared candidate at the time – did not win the MCB elections which were held last Sunday. I said at the time that I very much doubted that Mohammed Amin had the required support amongst the MCB affiliates to become the new MCB Secretary-General. The winner was Farooq Murad. The outcome was not really in much doubt as Farooq had been secretly nominated as the preferred candidate of the ‘Islamic movement’ organisations (MAB, UKIM, IFE and Dawatul Islam) back in December 2009, over six months prior to the actual MCB elections. There is nothing particularly untoward about any of this – affiliates of the MCB are free to choose their own preferred candidates – in secret or otherwise – and in any case the winner is the one who can command majority support from the elected Central Working Committee.
What was surprising was that Mohammed Amin failed to get elected even to the Central Working Committee. In his letter to the new Secretary-General, Farooq Murad, Mohammed Amin stated yesterday:
‘It is clear from yesterday’s voting that the major affiliates aligned in the Islamic Movement who vote as an organised block had decided to remove me as an elected member of the CWC.’
Now, as it happens I know a bit about how MCB elections work and believe Mohammed Amin is correct in his assumptions. The most likely reason for Amin not being elected to the CWC is that the ‘Islamic movement’ organisations had decided in advance to instruct their members not to vote for Mohammed Amin. Amin’s name could not have been on the list of ‘recommended candidates’ which is circulated in advance by the ‘Islamic movement’ organisations just before the election takes place. Again, there is nothing intrinsically wrong about this practice, people are free to vote for who they want and if the ‘Islamic movement’ organisations did not want to vote for Mohammed Amin that is their business.
What is sad though, is that too many of the people that are on the list of ‘recommended candidates’ are just placemen and women of the ‘Islamic movement’ organisations. Once elected on to the MCB’s CWC, you do not hear much from many of them again at all and they hardly lift a finger to help with the day to day work at the MCB. Mohammed Amin – for all his faults – was an actual worker and for the past two years in which he had been a member of the CWC had clearly put in a lot of time and effort into helping the MCB. The way he has been treated will not encourage people to come forward and give of their time and energy to the MCB.
Mohammed Amin has sent in a letter of resignation to the MCB which means that his talents will also be missed in the MCB’s Business & Economics committee too.
It is very regrettable that the ‘Islamic movement’ organisations have acted in this manner. Still, Mohammed Amin has said that he will continue to work for the best interests of UK Muslims and to help this country, it is just that this will now be outside of the MCB. All the best to him.