Is this a violation of Muslims’ beliefs?

The Sultan of Sokoto and Honourable Gudaji Kazaure of Katsina state share different views on this subject.

According to the member of the House of Representatives, representing Kazaure/Roni/Gwiwa/Yankwashi Constituency, his religion does not approve of population control.

In his words, "Prophet Mohammed says marry and have children so that I can be proud of you on the day of judgement.

Islamic wise, there is no planning so when you force a Muslim to say, he must plan for his children, it means you force him to violate the rules of his religion. So Mr Speaker, that is my observation.”

Meanwhile, the highest Islamic authority just said Islam is not against family planning or population control.

According to the Sultan of Sokoto, Muhammad Abubakar III, family planning is not prohibited by the religion.

However, he added that the issue is not family planning but the way it is communicated to Muslims.

He said, “I think everything has to come down to communication. For example, when the government set up a new policy, there was an issue on population control — five children per family. That set the whole thing backwards. People resisted but the whole essence of it was good.

“If you use the premise of the economy, they will tell you that only God gives wealth. But they will succumb to a superior argument when you say, ‘doesn’t Islam say be nice to your wives?’ Doesn’t Islam talk about a healthy population? So, why do you have to have 10 (children)? And the person may agree to have two.”

The Sultan added, “Are the clerics important? Yes. This is because they are very close to the grassroots and that was how the rise in polio was reversed. This is the same way we can operate on this (family planning).”

Speaking at the 5th Annual Family Planning Consultative Stakeholders’ Meeting in Abuja on Monday, September 11, 2017, he also revealed that the most influential clerics across all Islamic sects all agree on this issue.

He added that this agreement is what led to the publication of a book titled, ‘Islamic perspectives in reproductive health and childbirth spacing in Nigeria.’

Nigerian Monitor reports that the Sultan was represented by the Emir of Shonga, Dr Haliru Yahaya.

The issue of family planning is clearly one of those blurred lines situations, as a Muslim friend put it.

Apparently, there is a hadith that says do not kill you children just because you do not have a means to provide for them.

However, Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen said:

“Taking contraceptive measures is permissible in principle, because the Sahaabah (may Allah be pleased with them) used the method of ‘azl (coitus interruptus) during the time of the Messenger (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), and he did not forbid them to do that. But it is contrary to what is preferable because having a lot of children is something that is prescribed and is desirable.”

So, where does this leave us? Is this permitted or prohibited in Islam?

Let us know in the comment section.

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