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Around the world: Ahmadiyyat Islam in Guyana, South America

“I wish the Guyana Ahmadiyya Community a very successful upcoming Annual Convention as well as success in all their efforts spreading the truth about Ahmadiyyat through National Newspapers, Radio Shows, TV and their various other activities. May Allah bless all their efforts.”

NCN TV  (L-R) Maulana Ahsanullah Mangat, Jameel Mohamed &
Maulana Abdur Rahman Khan

Ahmadiyya Times | News Watch | US Desk
Source/Credit: Ahmadiyya Times | Exclusive
By Jameel Mohamed | November 29, 2012

Earlier this month I had the good fortune of visiting Guyana, South America, my land of birth and the country in which I was introduced to and joined the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. My previous visit was back in 1993 and I must say that Guyana and the Ahmadiyya Community have made and continue to make great progress in the right direction.

Guyana, officially the Cooperative Republic of Guyana, previously known as British Guiana is a sovereign state on the northern coast of South America. The country achieved independence from the United Kingdom on 26 May 1966 and became a Republic on 23 February 1970. Guyana is bordered to the east by Suriname, to the south and southwest by Brazil, to the west by Venezuela and on the north by the Atlantic Ocean. It comprises 83,000 square miles and population of about 800,000. The ethnic groups consist of East Indian origin 43%, African origin 30%, mixed 17%, Amerindian 9%. It’s Religions breakdown is — Christian 57%, Hindu 28%, Muslim 10%, other 5%.The languages spoken are English, Guyanese Creole and Amerindian languages (primarily Carib and Arawak).

Ahmadiyyat makes up a small portion of 80,000 thousand Muslims in Guyana however its influence on the Muslims and Non-Muslims there is great and getting greater daily. The Ahmadiyya Community in Guyana was founded on July 12th, 1959. Maulana Bashir Ahmad Orchard, who arrived in the British Colony of British Guiana (Guyana) on June 09th, 1960 and served until June 06th, 1966. During his tenure the Jama’at progressed rapidly and new branches appeared in Edinburgh Village, New Amsterdam, Rosignol Village and Leguan Island, in the Essequibo County.

Maulana Bashir Orchard was stationed in the town of New Amsterdam, Berbice where he tried to run a high school for a short period of time as well and he named this school Mahmood Secondary school. The school did not survive for long however he had a very positive impact on the general populace and had a few public lectures in the New Amsterdam Town hall as well and the City hall in Georgetown which were greatly appreciated by Muslims as well as non-Muslims. Most Muslims were amazed that he was an Ahmadi Muslims Missionary because of his European origin and this has a lasting impact on most people he came into contact with. A few members of Afro-Guyanese origin joined the Jama’at during his tenure. He started the Annual Jalsa at Sisters Village mosque and this tradition continued to date.  Incidentally, the 31st Annual Jalsa (Convention) of Guyana is scheduled on December 15th and 16th in main city of Georgetown. I had the honor of videotaping a program regarding the Jalsa, with the respected Missionaries Ahsanullah Mangat and Abdur Rahman Khan, to be aired on TV NCN in Guyana.

The Honorable Bashir Orchard was succeeded by Maulana Meer Ghulam Ahmad Naseem, who took charge on June 06th, 1966. Maulana Fazl Ilahi Bashir, Maulana Muhammad Siddique Nangali and Maulana Muhammad Aslam Qureshi followed.  Aslam Qureshi, under whose tutelage I joined Jamaat Ahmadiyya, was a very popular Missionary and loved by all because of his great hospitality and warm personality. He regularly talked about Islam during a weekly radio broadcasts on Radio Demerara.  During his tenure Lajna Imaillah, Atfaal Ul Ahmadiyya, Khuddam Ul Ahmadiyya and Ansarullah became active.  Additionally he has the unique and distinct honor of sending a student, Abdur Rahman Khan who hailed from the Leguan Island Jama’at to Rabwah, Pakistan to be trained as a Markazi Mubaligh. After graduating, Maulana Abdur Rahman Khan served for eight years in Tanzania and now currently serving in his native country Guyana.

Khalifatul Massih IV (front right) during his visit to Guyana in 1991
Maulana Abdur Rahman Khan (Guyanese) is far left back row

Maulana Qureshi was transferred to Trinidad in 1983 where he was martyred on August 5th, 1985.
He was succeeded by Maulana Muhammad Haneef Yacoob a native of Trinidad on August 21st, 1983 followed by Maulana Abdur Rasheed Agboola (Nigerian),  Maulana AlHassan Bashir Annan (Ghanaian) after which Maulana Abdur Rahman Khan (Guyanese) took office on in December of 2001 to current.
Maulana Ahsanullah Mangat was then stationed in Guyana from January 2003 until current as Missionary in Charge.

Guyana had the great fortune of the visit of Khalifatul Massih IV in 1991 – the first time any Khalifa has graced its shores. On that visit, Hudhur met many top government officials and delivered a public lecture with a question and answer session.

I wish the Guyana Ahmadiyya Community a very successful upcoming Annual Convention as well as success in all their efforts spreading the truth about Ahmadiyyat through National Newspapers, Radio Shows, TV and their various other activities. May Allah bless all their efforts.

  —  Around the world: Ahmadiyyat Islam in Guyana, South America
  —  Ahmadiyya Times Exclusive
  —   Jameel Mohamed, Inland Empire, Californoia

This content-post is archived for backup and to keep archived records of any news Islam Ahmadiyya. The views expressed by the author and source of this news archive do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of Ahmadiyya Times.


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