FROM THE ARCHIVES SECTION OF THE AFRICA FEDERATION

TRIBUTE TO MARHUM ALHAJ MOHAMEDRAZA DATOO

alhaj_mohamedraza_datooMarhum Alhaj Mohamedraza Ahmed Datoo hailed from Zanzibar. He was a qualified teacher by profession and had BSc in Mathematics and Dip.Ed. (Oxon) and as such, he was an Educationalist in his own right. He was a well-read personality with a wealth of experience in Madaris and our community in general.

Those who knew him will vouch for his sincere concerns and foresight about driving the community vehicle in accordance with the needs of our time. In 1968, as a young man who had just graduated from Oxford University in the UK and returned home after teaching for three years in a grammar school in Bournemouth, he spoke about the need for introducing Majalis in English and overhauling the contents of Majalis preached from our Mimbers.  This happened during the Hussein Day program held in Dar es Salaam. With his efforts and others, the first Majlis in English in East Africa was recited by none other than Marhum Mulla Asgherali M M Jaffer in Nairobi in the seventies.

Marhum Mohamedraza had also served the Federation of Khoja Shia Ithna-Asheri Jamaats of Africa in the capacity of the Hon. Secretary from 1980 to 1983 under the Chairmanship of Marhum Abdulrasul Ahmed Lakha. Despite his personal commitments, he took keen interest in our Madaris and is known to have dedicated more than 33 years of his life to our Madrassah in Nairobi. He did not only teach but also served as an advisor to both the teachers and the administration. In addition, he initiated the first teachers' training program for the Madrassah teachers in Nairobi and was a backbone in overhauling the Madrassah curriculum and introducing innovative ideas.

Marhum played a significant role in the production of the first ever Islamic Religious Education syllabus (IRE Syllabus) which has since been in use by our Madaris both, in East Africa and abroad. Indeed his commendable efforts, together with that of Marhum Aliraza Bhai Mulla Nanji, Sheikh Hasanain Kassamali and others, gave birth to a syllabus that later on became the foundation of other syllabi. As such, one can only imagine the wealth of experience he carried in the field of Islamic Education. I recall him as my Muallim during my childhood in Madrassah.

Marhum Mohamedraza Bhai was a committed social and community worker and was available for assistance at any time. As a travel agent for many years in Nairobi, he would go out of his way to provide assistance to the travellers. Community Elders and Leaders also regularly sought advice from him on issues concerning our Community matters.

Marhum enjoyed and loved reading. Since his arrival in the United Kingdom after his retirement, Marhum spent his time in different libraries; frequented Dar al-Tableegh in Harefield, attended special Arabic sessions at the residence of Haji Abdulhussain Takim and actively participated in Senior Citizen programs at Stanmore where he sometimes gave brief talks on the Holy Qur'an. Marhum had keen interest in understanding and studying Qur'an. He would encourage speakers to use more of Quranic verses in their lectures and thus enlighten the audience about them. Those who knew him from close will vouch for his wisdom, experience, broad thinking, compassion and had sense of humour. 

The community may not realize this but it has lost a real Gem. Our heart is grieved at the departure of this great personality. May Allah (SWT) grant the Marhum with Maghfirah; elevate his status in the Aakhirah; place his noble soul in the close proximity of the Chaharda Ma'sumeen (a.s.); and grant all the bereaved members of his family with Sabr-e-Jameel -ilaahi A'amin. Please do remember the Marhum with a recitation of Suratul-Fatiha.

Above article was written by:

Sheikh Mujahidali Sheriff
Portsmouth
UK

Message from the Secretariat of Africa Federation

The news of the passing away of Alhaj Mohamedraza Datoo was received with heavy hearts and with deep sorrow by the Office Bearers and the Secretariat staff of Africa Federation.

In his letter of condolence to the family of Marhum Mohamedraza Datoo, the Chairman of Africa Federation, Alhaj Anwarali Dharamsi expressed his deep sorrow and grief on the sudden demise of Marhum which occurred on 11th June 2012 in New Jersey, USA. He praised Marhum for his pleasant and amiable personality and his passion towards education and in imparting knowledge to others.

Marhum was a beacon of inspiration to many, especially to the students of the Madressah. Marhum earned great respect and admiration for his simplicity, vast knowledge of the religion and the history of Islam. He was a dedicated and committed person in his own right, having served as the Hon. Secretary of the Federation of KSI Jamaats of Africa from 1980 to 1983. Marhum has left behind some pleasant memories and footprint of a luminous personality that shall be cherished for many years to come.

May Allah (s.w.t.) bless him with His Rahma and Maghferah and grant him the choicest place in the proximity of Fourteen Ma'sumeen (a.s.) Ameen. Please remember Marhum Mohamedraza bhai and all Marhumeens with Sura-e-Fateha.

Secretariat

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