June 22 - 28, 2001


 Coastweek   Kenya

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Lamu district magistrate, honourary

Coastweek - - Death of Sheikh Harith al-Amin marks the end of an era of decent and honourable men.

Sheikh Harith was a gentleman's gentleman.

He had a long and an interesting life with a distinguished career in the administration when Kenya was a Colony, and the Coast a Protectorate.

His were the days when corruption was a word that was anathema to civil servants and to all honest men.

Because of his integrity, Sheikh Harith was appointed an honourary Game Warden in the Lamu District; he was also the local magistrate in the good old Lamu of yore, and his knowledge of Islamic jurisprudence was enormous.

He could quote the Holy Kuran with absolute ease on various issues and spoke with authority on Al-Ghazali as well as Al-Bukhari, two of the greatest Islamic scholars known to the West.

Sheikh Harith al-Amin comes from a distinguished family of clerics.

His father, translated and interpreted various chapters of the Holy Koran into Kiswahili and was held in awe by all the learned scholars of his time.

He was half-brother to Professor Ali Mazrui.

He will be sadly missed by relatives and friends for his wisdom, gentleness, hospitality and humourous demeanour.

- Nabeel Mohamed Al-Afghani, Istanbul, Turkey.




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