Iqra Foundation Annual Dinner

November 17, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

By Staff Reporter

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Mary Ali gives her acceptance address for the IQRA Education Leadership Award
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Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf receives for him and his wife Daisy Khan an award from Ali Yurtsever & Dr. Abidullah Ghazi

IQRA, the leaders in Islamic Education hosted their Annual Dinner on October 29th. IQRA’s community of advocates, educators and private Ansar (sponsors) gathered to celebrate the 28 years of the Foundation’s accomplishments.

The room was filled with more than 550 up beat supporters. The keynote speaker, Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf, chief architect of the Cordoba Initiative discussed the importance of Muslim Americans taking an active role in society. Appreciating the pioneering work and leadership role that Drs. Abidullah and Tasneema Ghazi have played, American Muslims were urged to invest in organizations like IQRA to help realize the implementation of critical and pivotal work in promoting innovative Islamic education in USA and worldwide. Dinner guests were also honored to hear the inspirational speech of Sister Mary Ali, the recipient of the IQRA Education Leadership Award that the organization has instituted to honor the memory of Dr. MAW Fakhri, its founding chairman.

Dr. Shahid Siddiqi, a member of the board and chairman of reception committee, lauded the leadership of IQRA team and its innovative futuristic approach. Dr. Ghazi in his presidential address narrated IQRA’s past achievements and laid down its future vision which covered revision of the program, use of electronic media for publication, standardization of Islamic education, establishment of distance education on internet and producing new genre of literature appropriate for our age and the global village.

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Pakistan Cricket Head Replaced–Butt Removed

October 15, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Compiled by Parvez Fatteh, Founder of http://sportingummah.com, sports@muslimobserver.com

IjazButtAPKMChaudary1The controversial reign of Ijaz Butt as head of Pakistani cricket has come to an end. The Pakistani government has decided not to retain Butt as chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and has appointed Zaka Ashraf in his place.

Ashraf, a senior banker, will take over as PCB chairman immediately, as was announced by Pakistan’s Presidency. Butt recently completed his three-year tenure on October 8th. His term began in October of 2008, and it was plagued by controversy, including last year’s spot-fixing scandal in England which led to player bans involving Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir. In addition, Butt was also head of the PCB when the Sri Lanka team was attacked in Lahore in 2009.

Butt returned home on Monday from Dubai after attending the executive board meeting of the International Cricket Council. It is unknown at this time as to what position he will return to. But millions of passionate Pakistani cricket fans will probably be happy to see him fade into oblivion after an embarrassing three years on and off the pitch.

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Community News (V13-I26)

June 23, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

Muslim-American Encyclopedia Racks Up Awards

communitynewspicThe “Encyclopedia of Muslim-American History,” has been named one of best reference books of 2010 by “Library Journal”; one of the top 40 reference titles of 2010 by the Pennsylvania School Librarians Association; an editor’s choice reference source by “Booklist” ; and an “honor book” by the Society of School Librarians International.

The recognition is gratifying for the encyclopedia’s general editor, Edward E. Curtis IV, Millennium Chair of Liberal Arts and professor of religious studies at IUPUI. “This is exactly the kind of attention we need to get this encyclopedia into public and school libraries, where the reference is really needed,” said Curtis.

Ten undergraduates and one graduate student from the School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI are among the 125 contributors to the “Encyclopedia of Muslim-American History,” published in 2010. The IUPUI students contributed entries to the reference book by way of Curtis’ spring 2008 religious studies course on Islam in America.

A recent wave of Islamophobia, including protests over the so-called “Ground Zero mosque” in Lower Manhattan, a number of state legislative attempts to outlaw shari‘a, or Islamic law and ethics, and U.S. Rep. Peter King’s hearings in the House of Representatives on Muslim American “radicalism”, has helped to make Muslim Americans more visible and more vulnerable.

“Knowledge of the various contributions made by Muslim Americans to U.S. society” has never been more critical, according to one review of the encyclopedia.

“Many of today’s anti-Muslim sentiments express the idea that Muslims and their cultures are foreign to America,” said Curtis. “The encyclopedia shows instead how Muslims and Islam have been part of American life since before the republic was even founded.”

Several reviews of the “Encyclopedia of Muslim-American History” describe the reference as the first to chart the long history of Muslims in the United States.

“It is unique in that there is no other source that chronicles the history of Muslim-American experience so broadly,” states “Reference Reviews.”In addition to covering religion, the encyclopedia analyzes Muslim contributions to realms of American life such as agriculture, poetry, basketball, philanthropy, and politics.

According to Curtis, the School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI deserves some credit for the reference’s success. “By creating an environment where public scholarship is rewarded rather than punished,” he asserts, “the school is helping to show how the liberal arts are essential to navigating today’s world.”

Halal poultry plant to add new jobs

PRINCESS ANNE, MD–Tauherr Poultry plans on bringing 15 to 25 jobs to Princess Anne. The company plans to use the recently purchased plant in the Princess Anne Industrial Park to process halal chicken.

Terrence Nichols, part owner of Tauherr Poultry, says he’s excited to help and bring jobs to the community. The facility in Princess Anne is already paid for. Nichols met with Somerset County town commissioners on Monday evening to explain his plans and inform them of the jobs the plant will create.

Nichols says the plant is looking to serve a niche market. Halal chickens are prepared according to Islamic dietary laws.

Naiyer Imam appointed to Stem Cell Assurance

JUPITER, FL–Stem Cell Assurance, Inc.  today announced it has created a Scientific Advisory Board and has appointed Naiyer Imam, M.D., M.Sc. to serve as an advisor. Dr. Imam will assist the Company in establishing strategic relationships with leading physicians, scientists, and medical institutions as well as participating in potential clinical trials and stem cell applications.

Dr. Imam received a Medical Degree at an accelerated program from Brown University, as well as a Bachelors of Science degree in Mathematics and Computer Science. In addition, he obtained a Master of Science degree in Biostatistics at Harvard University. Dr. Imam completed his radiology training at USF in Florida and a neuroradiology fellowship at Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions in Baltimore, MD. His previous academic posting include Assistant Professor at Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions and Professor of Radiology at Virginia Tech School of Medicine. Dr. Imam is well published in the medical and radiological literature as a physician, computer scientist and businessman.

Dr. Imam is currently serving as the chairman and CEO of Advanced Medical Imaging and Teleradiology, LLC — a new-generation teleradiology corporation that he founded in 2009. Dr. Imam is also the chairman of Gulf Advanced Imaging Corporation, a growing network of imaging centers based in Dubai, UAE. He has previously served as medical director for NightHawk Radiology Services, a publicly traded corporation, and chairman of American Teleradiology Nighthawks (ATN). He has previously served as chairman of Medical Imaging Specialists, a radiology corporation that he founded in Virginia, which served as a base for a number of imaging centers and surgical centers that Dr. Imam has either founded or developed.

Dr. Imam commented, “I am delighted to be involved with Stem Cell Assurance as a member of its Scientific Advisory Board. Stem cell science is a very exciting and evolving industry and Stem Cell Assurance is appropriately building its management and advisory team to ensure progressive strides in its research and clinical initiatives.”

Mark Weinreb, Stem Cell Assurance’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said, “We are very pleased to have Dr. Imam, a highly regarded physician and scientist, join our Scientific Advisory Board. His expertise in medicine, science and business will prove to be highly beneficial to the Company’s ongoing efforts in supporting our growth and expansion.”

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Community News (V13-I20)

May 12, 2011 by · Leave a Comment 

New Jasper County mosque holds open house

JASPER COUNTY,IA–The newly opened Masjid Al-Noor in Waterloo held an open house to educate the neighbors about the Muslim community. Several dozen people attended the event, according to the Newton Daily News.

Masjid Al-Noor has been in operation in Waterloo since 1980, most recently in an old, leaky space on West Second and Wellington streets, said Raja Akbar, chairman of the Center’s board of trustees.
Masjid Al-Noor officially moved in January with the help of more than 300 donors. They are planning  to get a full-time imam in the next six months. For now, a part-time imam leads all five prayers on the weekends and three prayers during the week.

“The other beauty is we are in the middle of two cities — we’re easily accessible,” said Abdur Rahim, chairman of the Center’s board of directors.

William Crowley of Waterloo already attends Cedar Valley Community Church, but was invited by several friends who attend prayer services at the center.

Crowley said he hoped to get “a bit better understanding of what goes on in the mosque.”

Muslim school team honored by County Bar Foundation

NEW BRUNSWICK,NJ–On Tuesday, May 3, the Middlesex County Bar Foundation honored the Noor Ul-Iman School of South Brunswick for winning the 2010-11 Vincent J. Apruzzese High School Mock Trial Middlesex County Championship. The event was held at the Middlesex County Superior Court in New Brunswick.

The winning team consisted of Attorney Advisors Ahmad Aboelezz, Esq., and Norman Epting, Jr., Esq.; Faculty Coaches Sufia Azmat and Fakhruddin Ahmed; and students Omer Syed, Mobasshir Poonawalla, Ismael Catovic, Atif Salahudeen, Noor Rostoum and Taliah Khan, Sarah Qari, Lina Saud, Sabah Abbasi and Zahra Khan.

Standing (l to r): MCBF Mock Trial Coordinator Darrin Behr, Esq., Dr. Fakhruddin Ahmed, Mrs. Sufia Azmat, Omer Syed, Mobasshir Poonawalla, Ismael Catovic, Atif Salahudeen, Noor Rostoum and MCBF Mock Trial Coordinator Brenda Vallecilla, Esq. Sitting (l to r): Taliah Khan, Sarah Qari, Lina Saud, Sabah Abbasi and Zahra Kha.

Inflammatory sign posted at mosque

EAST AMHERST,NY–The Jaffarya Center – a mosque and cultural education facility located at 10,300 Transit Road in East Amherst – has not even celebrated its official opening yet, and already a controversy is brewing.

The Muslim Public Affairs Council (M-PAC) of Western New York, along with the directors of the Jaffarya Center, have invited nearby residents, Amherst politicians, and the general public to attend an inauguration ceremony and dinner this coming Saturday, May 14.

But this past weekend, the man who lives next door to the mosque posted an inflammatory sign near it.

Dr. Khalid Qazi, director of M-PAC, told reporters Monday inside the Jaffarya Center that this an isolated incident and the mosque has received wide support from the community. “This is in stark contrast to the reception we have received from all our neighbors and the community. It does great disservice, not only to the Muslim community, but to all who are a part of the mosaic of the Amherst community,” he added.

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Nigerian Terror Suspect: This Apple Fell Too Far From the Tree

January 4, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

2009-12-27T180848Z_310678741_GM1E5CS060801_RTRMADP_3_SECURITY-AIRLINE-NIGERIA

Nigeria’s Information Minister Dora Akunyili speaks during a news conference in Lagos. Farouk Mutallab, originally from Nigeria, had travelled widely, returning to Nigeria just before the jet attack.

REUTERS/Akintunde Akinleye

USAfricaonline, Commentary, Chido Nwangwu, Posted: Dec 28, 2009

The most unlikely person has snatched Alhaji (Dr.) Umaru Mutallab’s relatively mild-mannered public persona from him: his own son, Farouk Abdul Mutallab.

Farouk is the alleged terror-executor who on Christmas Day reportedly fumbled his own plan to blow up Delta-Northwest Airlines flight 235, minutes before landing in Detroit, the economically troubled American motor city.

The events in Detroit merely played up, to a global canvas, the contrast of the two individuals.

The older Mutallab, a conservative Muslim, was born in 1939 in the north central state of Katsina (home of the current, ailing President Umaru Ya’Adua).

A USAfricaonline.com count found that Umaru Mutallab was chairman of more than 36 blue chip companies inside Nigeria and overseas.

But while the older Mutallab sought and gained multiple millions dollars in rewards for his core, long-standing interests and skills in business especially in financial services, the younger Mutallab, by his own admission, sought to be a foot soldier for Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaida.

A highly respected conservative man whose friends cut across states, religion and gender, Mutallab is soft spoken and very intelligent and industrious.

Having reported and followed key aspects of Umaru Mutallab and Nigeria’s military and civilian elite, I know that the older Mutallab benefited from his deft positioning across an immense network of family, geo-ethnic and professional layers of interests.

Consequently, the man has had a near permanent presence on Nigeria’s economic landscape as a government official, banking investor, facilitator or shareholder – working the levers of power- all through civilian and military governments in Nigeria for more than 35 years.

Alhaji Mutallab is one of Nigeria’s most respected technocrats and administrators, having also served as a Federal Minister of Economic Development & Reconstruction. He is a Fellow of the Association of Chartered and Certified Accountants (FCCA), Institute of the International Bankers Association (FIBA, USA), the Institute of Bankers and the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (FCA).

Mutallab was appointed director of First Bank on March 8, 1996 and became chairman of the Board on March 18, 1999. In mid December, Alhaji Umaru Mutallab – after his massively rewarding decade at the helm of the First Bank Plc – fully retired as Chairman. He was succeeded by Oba Otudeko, a billionaire chairman of the Honeywell Group of Companies and immediate past President of the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE).

Mutallab has been in strategic board positions of the banking sector for decades as CEO and/or Chairman of various financial institutions including United Bank for Africa (UBA).

“The man is amiable and always at the forefront of any economic revival committees and boards of government, the alleged link of his son to the alleged terrorism plot left many of his friends and associates devastated,” notes Obinwa Nnaji, USAfricaonline.com bureau chief in Lagos. “Other Nigerians still argue at their homes, various places and across USAfrica multimedia blogs that they still do not believe it to be a stock in trade of Nigerians to be found planting bombs in aircraft.”

The Alhaji, from some indications, has been concerned about his son’s radical Islam associates, including potentially violent views. He reportedly, but yet unconfirmed by government and independent sources, visited the U.S. embassy in the Nigerian capital, Abuja, to alert its security of the son’s growing liaison and engagement with al-Qaida-type characters, especially in the radicalized country of Yemen.

In a Dec. 12, 2001 exclusively commentary for USAfricaonline.com, I raised a red flag and forewarned in the critical insight which focused on al-Qaida, rag-tag Taliban and Nigeria’s security situation.

Farouk attended college to study engineering in London, and lived in a posh, upscale apartment paid for by his father.

But one of the areas where the older Mutallab’s skills and services did not yield much if any significant value for Nigerians was his tenure as chairman of the troubled and woeful former National Electric Power Authority (NEPA).

As a key member of the Nigerian ruling groups, he bagged the chairmanship of the Vision 2020 Business Support Group of Nigeria. He is a key shareholder and chairman of the very successful Spring Waters Nigeria (SWAN), and a host of other investments.

Evidently, even the luxury and resources amassed by the older Mutallab could not dissuade his 23-year-old son Farouk from being a jihadist and fighter for Islamic fundamentalism through the violent, toxic mechanisms of terrorism, as alleged from his actions on Christmas Day.

Chido Nwangwu is the Founder & Publisher of the first African-owned, U.S-based professional newspaper published on the Internet at USAfricaonline.com, The Black Business Journal, CLASSmagazine, PhotoWorks.TV, AchebeBooks.com, USAfrica.TV and several blogs. Nwangwu has been honored by the Washington, D. C.-based National Immigration Forum for utilizing multimedia to fight authoritarianism and foster freedom of expression.

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