UUCSA Appeal: Earnest Plea to Retailers
All praise is due to Allah and may His choicest salutations continue to descend upon our Master and Leader Mohammad Sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam who said that:
“A Muslim is a brother to another Muslim; he does not cheat, lie to him, or deceive him …” (Tirmidhi)
It is during times of national disasters that consumers oftentimes become victims of exorbitant price hikes precipitated by panic buying and the fear of scarcity. In Islam, overcharging especially during times of crisis is considered a violation of fair business norms and is deemed to be from among deceptive trade practices. Inflating prices without any valid reason is an injustice and is considered to be exploitation of the vulnerable!
Nabi Shu’ayb Alayhis Salaam exhorted his people thus: “And do not deprive people of their due and do not commit abuse on earth, spreading corruption. (26:183) He cautioned them against short changing people, he appealed to them not to deceive, fleece, cheat or resort to fraudulent business practices. They refused to subscribe to ethical and fair business practices arguing that religion should not regulate how they earn or spend their monies. They found it difficult to accept that economic activity is very much part of religious conduct. Piety is not confined to ritual worship, but includes the ability to display compassion, honesty, and trustworthiness. The correlation between worship and ethical business practices is therefore critical in Islam.
The lockdown offers Muslims an opportunity to display the beauty of Islam by demonstrating the spirit of brotherhood, by caring and sharing. We urge retailers to behave responsibly, compassionately and honestly. We remind them of the Prophetic tradition that says:
“Whoever withholds food (in order to raise its price), has certainly erred!” (Muslim)
Yusuf Patel (Moulana)
06 April 2020 / 12 Shabaan 1441 AH
UUCSA is an umbrella body comprising nine affiliate members. It represents approximately 1500 Muslim Scholars. It has a national foot print across the nine provinces of South Africa.
Head Office: P.O. Box 38311, Gatesville, 7764, Cape Town, South Africa, Tel: + 27 21696 5150 Fax:+ 27 21696 5154
Secretariat: P.O. Box 257, Middelburg, 1050, South Africa, Tel: +2713 243 2423, Fax: +2713 243 2423, Email: [email protected]