Dubai: The extended Al Shaikh family in Saudi Arabia has called on Qatari authorities to drop the name of Shaikh Mohammad Bin Abdul Wahab from the country’s main mosque.
The family said in a statement that the Qatari emir who built the mosque wrongly claimed Mohammad Bin Abdul Wahab was one of his forefathers.
Mohammad Bin Abdul Wahab (1703-1792) called for a return to “pure Islam” in which Muslims uphold only “the original principles of Islam” and to reject “corruptions introduced by negative innovations and heresy.
The family argued that the imam and Friday sermon preacher at the mosque did not adhere to the Wahabism ideology promoted by Mohammad Bin Abdul Wahab.
The signatories of the statement, around 200 according to a report in Saudi daily Okaz on Sunday, included the Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia, the Chairman of the Shura Council and the Minister of Islamic Affairs.
“This statement is to refute the false rumours and allegations made by people who claimed they were descendants from Shaikh Mohammad Bin Abdul Wahab,” the family members said.
Only four of Shaikh Mohammad’s sons had children and the family tree clearly shows who they and their descendants are, the statement added.
“Anyone who claims he is a descendant and is not on the family tree is making false claims, and this includes an emir in a Gulf country,” the statement said, without naming Shaikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani, the former emir of Qatar, who built and named the mosque in the capital Doha.
The mosque, opened to the public in 2011, accommodates up to 11,000 worshippers. Its main imam is Yusuf Al Qaradawi, a Muslim Brotherhood leader who has often waded into controversy with his fatwas.