Fifteen South African descendants of Ottoman scholar Abu Bakr Efendi (Ebu Bekir Efendi), who was despatched on the request of the British Empire to the Cape of Good Hope in 1862 to show Islamic thought and tradition to the Muslim group, turned Turkish residents with a presidential decree on Aug. 20, following their functions.
“We are proud and elated to have the ability to witness the compensation of a rift that lasted over 100 years and to duly commemorate Abu Bakr Efendi, who established the foundations of the sturdy ties between the Muslims of Turkey and South Africa,” the Turkish ambassador to South Africa, Elif Çomoğlu Ülgen, mentioned on Twitter Wednesday. She added that the primary group of recent residents had visited the embassy to use for his or her Turkish ID playing cards and passports.
Fourteen of the scholar’s descendants had traced their grandfather and their roots in Turkish lands earlier than. They visited Turkey’s japanese Erzurum province after which Istanbul, the place their grandfather had lived, in 2017 and 2018.
Abu Bakr Efendi was initially from the Ottoman Empire’s Shahrizor Eyalet, masking the realm of present-day Iraqi Kurdistan. Receiving his major schooling in a madrassa in this eyalet, he went to Istanbul following the loss of life of his father. In Istanbul, he continued his schooling for 5 years. Abu Bakr returned to Baghdad to finish his education and moved to Erzurum, the place his household had migrated and settled. In 1862, he went to Istanbul to ask for the federal government’s assist for the difficulty his folks skilled in Erzurum as a consequence of a famine. During this go to, he was assigned by the federal government to show non secular classes to the Muslims in the Cape of Good Hope.
In the 18th century, when the rivalry between the colonial states was at its highest, round Three million Muslims have been introduced by the Dutch from the East Indies island of Java as prisoners to South Africa. These folks have been the primary Muslims to reach in the Cape of Good Hope. Although they settled in South Africa, they have been pressured to stay in isolation from their mom tongue, faith and traditions, which led to the emergence of various, conflicting teams. The lack of a educated non secular scholar and the rise of superstitions triggered the conflicts. When South Africa got here underneath British rule, this example alarmed the British administration.
To put an finish to the conflicts, the British envoy in the Cape of Good Hope requested Britain’s Queen Victoria to ship an Islamic scholar to the Cape of Good Hope. Seeing the Ottomans because the chief of the Muslims at the moment, Queen Victoria wrote a letter to Ottoman Sultan Abdülaziz and requested him to ship a scholar to the Cape of Good Hope.
Tasked with educating Islamic thought and tradition and resolving non secular and social conflicts amongst Muslim communities in the Cape of Good Hope, Abu Bakr Efendi left Istanbul on Sept. 3, 1862, and went to London through Paris, the place he contacted British Foreign Ministry officers. After two months in London, he sailed from Liverpool, arriving on the Cape of Good Hope on Jan. 17, 1863.
Welcomed with nice curiosity by the British governor-general in the area and the native Muslims, Abu Bakr devoted his life to the non secular schooling of the locals. Only 15 days after arriving in the Cape of Good Hope, he established a college in town and enrolled greater than 300 college students in the varsity inside 20 days. He taught the Quran together with the Arabic and Turkish languages and in addition learn non secular books in his courses.
His efforts weren’t restricted to the schooling of kids alone. He discovered English and native Dutch – a mixture of Dutch and Malay – in order to speak with the folks extra successfully. He additionally delivered sermons to the folks and went to assist Muslims in the encompassing provinces. He translated many notable non secular books into the native languages that he had quickly discovered. Abu Bakr additionally began to write down books in Arabic and Dutch. Among them, a very powerful one was “Beyanü’d-din” (“The Exposition of the Religion”). As the oldest and essentially the most complete non secular work written and revealed in the native language of the area, “Beyanü’d-din” attracted the eye of Orientalists and was translated into English by Mia Brandel-Syrier as “The Religious Duties of Islam as Taught and Explained by Abu Bakr Effendi.”
The scholar married twice, first to a Dutch woman and later to the daughter of Jeremiah Cook, a relative of the well-known 18th-century explorer Capt. James Cook. Having six youngsters from his second marriage, he raised his youngsters to observe in his footsteps. Hence, his youngsters went on to hold out essential actions in the Cape of Good Hope, like their father.
After working to share Islam in its true sense for many years, Abu Bakr handed away on Aug. 29, 1880, in the Cape of Good Hope and left a wealthy cultural legacy behind, together with many mosques and colleges.