PROHIBITION OF BUYING AND SELLING OF VOTES

IN THE NAME OF ALLAH, THE BENEFICENT, THE MERCIFUL

BEING THE SECOND KHUTBAH FOR THE MONTH OF J-UULA 12/J-UULA /1440AH (18 /JANUARY/2019CE)

 

PROHIBITION OF BUYING AND SELLING OF VOTES

Praise be to Allah, we praise and thank Him-the Exalted, we believe in Him and rely on Him. We seek refuge in Him from the evils of ourselves and deeds. He whom Allah guides is guided, and whom He leads astray, none can guide him. I bear witness that there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah alone, and I equally testify that our Prophet, Muhammad (SAW) is His servant and Messenger … May the peace and blessing of Allah be upon him (SAW), his noble household, faithful companions, the succeeding generation and whoever follows them in righteousness till the end of time.

Oh worshipers of Allah, I admonish you and myself to fear Allah, for that is the sole preparation required for admission into the home of permanence on the day of judgement. Allah says

تِلْكَ الْجَنَّةُ الَّتِي نُورِثُ مِنْ عِبَادِنَا مَنْ كَانَ تَقِيًّا{مريم:19\63}.

That is Paradise, which We give as inheritance to those of Our servants who were fearing of Allah.   (19: 63)

Brothers in Islam, today’s khutbah will be in furtherance of our discussion on politics and elections therefore, we shall today discuss The Islamic judgement on the Buying and Selling of Vote, which is one of the corrupt practices as far as the electoral process is concerned.

Honourable brothers and sisters in Islam, your vote is a trust, the voter must therefore ensure compliance with its entire requirement, he must not waste it, because that is regarded as a betrayal. Allah says of betrayal thus:

﴿يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَخُونُوا اللَّهَ وَالرَّسُولَ وَتَخُونُوا أَمَانَاتِكُمْ وَأَنْتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ﴾ {الأنفال:8 \27}

O you who have believed, do not betray Allah and the Messenger or betray your trusts while you know [the consequence]. “ (8:27)

The trust requires that a voter selects a trustful and just candidate, who abides by the limits set by Allah (swt), and is able to competently manage the post he is to be voted for. Allah says:

إِنَّ خَيْرَ مَنِ اسْتَأْجَرْتَ الْقَوِيُّ الْأَمِينُ﴾ {القصص:28\ 26}

Indeed, the best one you can hire is the strong and the trustworthy.” (28: 26)

As to buying and selling of vote or the conscience, and voting for he who pays the highest bid, these are all classified as betrayal of trust. It is forbidden for both the electorates and the candidates to be involved in this practice, because it aids selecting the wrong persons to position of authority. The Prophet (pbuh) said: “When honesty is lost, then wait for the Hour.” It was asked, “How will honesty be lost, O Allah’s Apostle?” He said, “When authority is given to those who do not deserve it, then wait for the Hour.” (Bukhari)

It is therefore not decent for a voter to cast his vote through such way, it is equally not right for a candidate to gather votes in this manner. It is abhorrent for a community to be established on a basis of purchase of consciences, tribalistic tendencies, instead of competence. What is expected of those who see money as everything and sell their votes or buy that of others?! What then would be expected from him if he becomes the winner?! Logically, he would try to recover all he has spent through abuse of office. Using one’s position for personal interests is forbidden religiously and a crime punishable by law.
Voting is a witness which one will be asked about before Allah. Allah says: (سَتُكْتَبُ شَهَادَتُهُمْ وَيُسْأَلُونَ)

“Their testimony will be recorded, and they will be questioned.” (43: 19)

Whoever cast his vote in exchange for money or other things without selecting the ideal and appropriate person in accordance with the standards of Islamic Law has made a false testimony; because he testifies for a man’s capability to lead over the Muslims where he does not deserve it.

Sale of vote could be classified as a form of bribery in which both the giver and taker incur the wrath of Allah. Bribery is to give money or things in the same meaning to nullify a right or to realize a falsehood. It includes everything a person spends such as money, benefit or service to others in order to achieve his interest, and this is the reality of buying and selling of votes.
Prof. Dr. Walid Rabee’- a professor of Sharia at Kuwait University, says: “the electoral process is a legal action, it determines the system, its time and position in a constitution or bills to choose – base on its position or status – a person or more as senate leader or representatives or the like of that. It is a legal process, through which the people chose by a way of election, independent representatives to act on their behalf in the administration of authority.

Islamically, the judgement on election could be classified into two:

  • It is a testimony: A testimony given by the voter to affirm the competence of the person voted for regarding the responsibility and public affair entrusted to him.
  • It is a recommendation: A recommendation from the voter for the candidate to be elected. In Judiciary matters, recommendation is the setting right of witnesses before the judge. Islamic jurists affirm that witnesses in matters of recommendation agree with witnesses in a lawsuit, inter alia, that it is required in both cases, full mind-control, uprightness, justice, sight and speech and that the witness should not be voided by act of malicious accusation of fornication, kinship that voids acceptance of testimony, and no string of benefit attached.

In any of the two classes described above, it is not right for the witness to collect any money in exchange for the testimony he was to give. If he collects it, then he lost his integrity because that translates to collecting bribe, which is forbidden.

The selection of persons by direct election is a serious matter in nation-building and the definition of its geographical entity, thus it should be placed in its proper place above every thought of bargains, or buying and selling. Vote is a trust, testimony, and recommendation. The goal is the selection of the fittest person, which will ensures the interests of the community, and works to sustain its unity and advancement, and happiness, and avoids its derailment.

Whoever appoints or takes part in the appointment of a person to lead the Muslims and he is aware of better person, has thrown himself in tribulation and disaster.

Yazid bn Abu Sufyan said: Abubakar said to me when he sent me to Syria: “O Yazid, you have kinship, would you perhaps favour them with authority (leadership), and that is the greatest thing I fear for you, after what the messenger of Allah (pbuh) said: Whoever manages anything in the affairs of the Muslims, and he appoints a person with favouritsm, the curse of Allah will be on him, Allah will not accept from him any act until He puts him in Jahannam.” (Haakim)

In another hadith: “Any person who appoints a person over a group of ten persons after being aware that among the ten is a better person than whom he has appointed, such has betrayed Allah, His messenger, and the Muslims.” (Abu Ya’la)

In another hadith as well, there exist a strong warning against he who betrays Allah thus: Ma’qal bn Yasaar (R.A) said: I heard the messenger of Allah (pbuh) saying: “no servant of Allah is entrusted to rear a flock and he dies on the day he dies having betrayed his flock, except that Allah- the Exalted forbids him the paradise.”

Ibn Taymiyah said in his book- “ (As-siyaasatu-sh-shar’iyyah; 45/146):

“Verily, to change from the rightful and fittest person to other person than him- due to relationship, allegiance, friendship, tribal or ideological inclination,  or nationality, such as Arabic, Persian, Turkish, Greek, or due to bribe taken from him in monetary or benefit terms or other motives, or due to hatred towards the fittest person, or due to existing enmity between them- he has betrayed Allah and His Messenger and falls under forbidden things in the saying of Allah thus: (يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا تَخُونُوا اللَّهَ وَالرَّسُولَ وَتَخُونُوا أَمَانَاتِكُمْ وَأَنْتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ) (O you who have believed, do not betray Allah and the Messenger or betray your trusts while you know [the consequence].) (8: 27)

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SECOND KHUTBAH

All praises are due to Allah, We praise and thank Him, believe and depend on Him. I testify there is no god but Allah alone and I testify that our leader- Muhammad (pbuh) is his servant and messenger.  May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, his household, companions and whoever follows them till the day of recompense.

Allah says: (     (ظَهَرَ الْفَسَادُ فِي البرِّ وَالْبَحْرِ بِمَا كَسَبَتْ أَيْدِي النَّاسِ لِيُذِيقَهُمْ بَعْضَ الَّذِي عَمِلُوا لَعَلَّهُمْ يَرْجِعُونَ) [الرّوم :30\41]   )

Corruption has appeared throughout the land and sea by [reason of] what the hands of people have earned so He may let them taste part of [the consequence of] what they have done that perhaps they will return [to righteousness].” (30:41)

Dear worshippers of Allah, corruption has become endemic in our land to the extent that stakeholders in the country are not left out. It is allegedly claimed that the Chief Justice of Nigeria, Justice Walter Onnoghen was found wanting in a number issues, including non- declaration of assets as required by law, operating foreign accounts contrary to the law. The prosecuting agency alleged that contrary to relevant laws regulating conduct of public office holders, the CJN, maintained a domiciliary foreign currencies account that comprised of Dollars Account, Pound Sterling Account and Euro Account, among other charges. The question is that if the CJN who is expected to be most knowledgeable of the laws and most just could allegedly be involved in these contradictions, what then could be said of the common citizens.

It is said that there are two kinds of people in the society who if they are upright, the people will be upright. But when they are corrupt, the entire people will be corrupt, they are the scholars and the leaders.

Oh Allah descend peace; flowing with continuous tranquility and security upon Nigeria and all other Muslim nations. O Allah accept the worship of the pilgrims of hajj and Umrah, and grant us all Your pleasure, And the last of our call will be, “Praise to Allah, Lord of the worlds!”

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