Abdul Sallam Mohammed: Can the Sulfi Forum be considered as a step towards establishing a new political party?
Abdul Aziz Al-Duba’ai: We have never thought of establishing a political party, but political activities are not prohibited whether legally or in our Sharee’ah (Islamic law).
AM: Do you believe in the political work?
AD: The political work is part of our Sharee’ah; however, it should be practiced under certain restrictions.
AM: Does this mean that you believe in the partisan work?
AD: We believe in the political work, but not the partisan work.
AM: Do you work within the law and constitution?
AD: Yes, our work is within the law and constitution.
AM: This means that you have given back your previous ideas in that you do not believe in the law and constitution?
AD: Never … the Yemeni constitution is based on the Islamic Sharee’ah and there is a text stating that any text that goes against Sharee’ah is void. All rules are borrowed from the Islamic Sharee’ah. Anything beyond that is viewed as an attempt to circumvent the constitution and this is completely rejected.
AM: Do you actually believe in not to revolt against the ruler even if he was wrongful?
AD: Yes. That is right, even if he was wrongful because revolting against the ruler could lead to further problems. I think the reasons for the current sedition lie on the great criticism of the ruler and spreading this criticism among people. This could lead to an armed uprising.
AM: So what is your vision for reforming the ruler?
AD: Our vision for reforming lies on giving advice to the ruler to adhere to the Islamic Sharee’ah.
AM: How do you consider President Saleh as the legitimate ruler?
AD: We do not fight with the one whom Allah sent to us. Once he assumes power and has the capacity, we have to obey him.
AM: How do you consider his successor to be a ruler?
AD: If his successor ascends to power through the legitimate way and once he was chosen by wise and religious scholars, he is then accepted by the nation.
AM: But President Saleh ascended to power through elections which you do not believe in?
AD: He was elected by People’s Council which was a legitimate council stemming from people’s choice.
AM: This means that he will remain a ruler throughout his lifetime?
AD: There is no problem in this once his mental and physical capacities are intact.
AM: How do you view the Islamic movement represented by the Muslim Brotherhood?
AD: There is no such classification. Yemeni people are all Muslims. When you say a Muslim movement, you deem the other to be Non-Muslim and thus you revoke its identity.
AM: Do not you revoke the identity of leftists and nationalists?
AD: Leftists do not believe in Allah and their theory says that there is no God and life is meaningless.
AM: But leftists and nationalists work under the constitution which is based on Islamic Sharee’ah?
AD: The Socialist Party must give up socialism and change its name and national parties should adhere to Sharee’ah.
AM: But Islah Party builds alliance with leftists and nationalists … how do you see this?
AD: We hope they will stop building alliance with leftists and nationalists.
AM: What prevents you from allying with them?
AD: If there are common lines and they are not representing a foreign agenda, this can be discussed then.
AM: How do you view the Southern Mobility?
AD: The Southern Mobility is the byproduct of congestion. It is steered by invisible hands from outside. The Southern Mobility leaders live in European countries and these countries support them. Britain still believes in its right of guardianship over Aden and its people, but this thinking is completely rejected.
AM: Are you for the rights of Southern people or for authorities?
AD: We are for the legitimate rights to be returned back to their owners; however, we are against inciting chaos, positional and sectarian seditions. This is rejected by Sharee’ah too, because it cuts the bonds of affinity. We are one nation since the dawn of history.
AM: Islah warned following 1994 against not doing away with war effects … now, and after 15 years, you repeat the same words … why were you late in presenting your vision?
AD: If a duty is done by some Muslims, then it is not required from others.
AM: But Islah Party holds the authority responsible?
AD: We are not in position to decide who is wrong and who is right.
AM: You always stress the importance of giving advice to the ruler in secret … what is the feasibility of such a move now?
AD: The goal behind giving advice is to correct things. Advice in public might instigate chaos and unrest.
AM: Do you think that such a means is effective?
AD: I think so. There is no problem in using others once they exist.
AM: What is your vision of the Sulfi Movement’s future, especially after this gathering?
AD: We see that these gatherings and meetings should be continued depending on our resources.
AM: How do you view Islamic personalities who attended your gathering though they belong to Islah like Sheikh Abdul Majeed Al-Zindani?
AD: They were guests and not participants. We always receive all persons regardless of their political affiliation.