Register to Vote by 19 May – MCB Urges Imams and Community Leaders to Remind Congregation of June Elections

15 May 2009

The Muslim Council of Britain today urges Imams and community leaders to remind their local community about the importance of voting in the forthcoming elections on 4 June. The deadline for registration is Tuesday 19 May 2009 and people are urged to visit www.mcb.org.uk/vote2009 to learn about the registration process.

The participation in the elections is an important form of active engagement in civil society, a basic duty in Islam. Muslims are greatly underrepresented in politics at all levels, and it is vital that we address and rectify this situation.

The Muslim Council of Britain is asking all khatibs and Imams to devote some time to this issue in their Jumuah Khutbah on 15 May. The MCB urges the projection of three simple messages:

1. Voting is an important civic and Islamic duty. We must vote on issues and for people who will seek the common good for all Britons.

2. The deadline for voter registration is 19 May 2009. The community is reminded to ensure that their friends are family are registered to vote by this date.

3. Make sure you vote to ensure far-right racists do not get a seat in the European Parliament.

The active participation of the Muslim community is imperative to prevent Islamophobic groups like the British National Party (BNP) to gain a foothold because of low voter turnout. The BNP will be stoking up anti-Muslim hatred to win a seat. They need one million votes, and once they get in, they will join Islamophobes on continental Europe to attack Muslims and other minorities. For many years, the BNP has been targeting vulnerable Muslim communities with their abuse and misinformation in order to get public votes.

The MCB urges all people to vote in the 4th June European Parliament elections to ensure that fascist groups are comprehensively defeated at the ballot box.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION VISIT: www.mcb.org.uk/vote2009

Notes:

1. The Muslim Council of Britain is an umbrella group of 500 Muslim organisations – mosques, charities, community groups.

2. The MCB campaigns to encourage Muslims to fully participate in Britain’s democratic traditions and exercise their vote.

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