- 23 APR 2020
Prime Minister’s Ramadan Message 2020
Assalamu Alaikum and Ramadan Mubarak to the Muslim community of Trinidad and Tobago.
As the holy month of Ramadan is once again upon us, we give praise and thanks to Almighty Allah for blessing us with this auspicious season and opportunity for spiritual rejuvenation. Ramadan is a time like no other for our Muslim brothers and sisters as it presents the chance to attain greater closeness to the creator and serves as a means of increasing harmony and unity within the community itself. Muslims and non-Muslims alike normally come together during this period in great fellowship as Mosques and homes overflow with love and generosity.
While Muslims are commanded to fast during the holy month by abstaining from food and drink from dawn to dusk, the struggle of the fast is much greater than simply that. The spiritual essence of the fast is in fact the strengthening of the connection with the Creator and developing a greater sense of piety, God-consciousness and self-restraint. By developing these qualities and thereby becoming a more pious, righteous and virtuous person this would inevitably lead to us becoming better citizens and therefore redound to the benefit of Trinidad and Tobago as a whole and our future generations.
Almighty God has said in the Holy Quran Chapter 2 verse 183 “O ye who believe, fasting is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, so that you may develop taqwa (God consciousness)”. This is a quality that we should all earnestly strive to develop which would therefore enable us to achieve spiritual enlightenment and ultimate success.
Ramadan this year is a Ramadan with a difference as our country, together with the entire world is dealing with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Amongst other things, this situation has shown us the great resilience of the human spirit and that there are still brave, compassionate and generous people amongst us. The Muslim community has been a beacon of hope in assisting our less fortunate citizens during this very trying time and as Prime Minister of our beloved country I say a special thank you to all those who have assisted and who continue to do so in any way. One of the everlasting lessons of the fast of Ramadan is to encourage us to remember and therefore reach out to help the less fortunate amongst us. At this juncture in our nation’s history, this lesson has never been more pertinent and relevant to bear in mind.
As we reap the spiritual rewards of fasting during this month, let us be reminded also to take the necessary safety and medical precautions as advised by the medical experts to keep ourselves, our families and our jamaats safe during this time.
I close by once again wishing the Muslim community a safe, happy and holy Ramadan and I pray that the Almighty accepts all your service and sacrifice during this time.