Interview with EC Interim President Jamil Anouti


1. How can we help you, especially with Ramadan right around the corner?

Come out to the meeting we’re having on Saturday after Maghrib to plan for Ramadan. I have the skeleton (who will lead Taraweeh, take care of the food…), but then there’s the “fluff” (extras). That’s where the community comes in. I want the community to come out and do the stuff that they don’t see being done. Instead of coming to us (EC) and expecting it, taking it upon yourselves to go ahead and do it.

2. How did you become ICT President without any sort of election? If temporary, when is the election?

Our elected president stepped down. Then Nawaz had to step down. I would love to be under someone who is democratically elected. But we don’t have an official membership body to have a general assembly, which the constitution calls for.

But, we still need functions to happen and someone to oversee them. Once we have an updated membership, which is a BOT function, you guys can have any president that you want. I’m trying to start my life. Masjid business is not something that I’m in for the long run. I’ll step back to my position as youth program coordinator once you guys pick a president.

3. Being president is a prestigious title, but how much power do you really have?

The community needs to come together under someone, I’m not saying it should be me but it needs to be under someone. They (community) have been polarized into different camps.

To be president is a facetious title because what am I president of? The ICT. But you guys don’t want to recognize the ICT. You want to come start problems and it gets to the point where its like “What am I actually doing and how can I bring your hearts together to make me president of something, even if it’s interim?” We have to start recognizing authority.

The EC and BOT respect me. But if the hearts of the community don’t come together, then I’ve failed.

4. According to VII (Section II page 9) Article VI (Section 6, page 8) of the ICT constitution, an EC or BOT member cannot also be an employee of the ICT. How are you able to be part of the EC and Al-Huda School?

I don’t work at Al-Huda School anymore.

5. Do you believe there is a genuine separation of powers between the BOT and the EC?

I think there is. The BOT and EC want to see success and improvement. Some people would call that having one thought process, but really it’s more like being on the same page. I have a lot of grievances with the BOT and I can explain them to you.

But to say that there isn’t a separation of power…is a copout in my opinion.

6. Anything else you’d like to tell the community?

Ya’ll need to come together. You guys are just playing around with the religion. Talking about Facebook and emails and Halloween…we have refugees who can’t eat and are getting caught up in gangs. They’re going away from the Deen because you’ve made the religion irrelevant to them. They see people throwing fits in the Masjid and they ask, ‘Why would I subjugate myself to this form of a religion?’

I don’t think people understand the impact that they’re having on the future generations.

The youth are not unaware of your actions.

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2 thoughts on “Interview with EC Interim President Jamil Anouti

  1. Assalaamu alaykum wa Rahamtullahi wa barakatuh! Jazakaalahu khairan for that honest respond. It’s really hard when, where and how to satisfy everyone’s needs. Why not act as if you (not in that position) are one of the community in need? Layout all the things that you think should be done, or best needed by the Tucson Muslim community. Then ask them, add and remove what is unnecessary. And put suggestion boxes in the men and ladies section that the governing board might know what they/you have to do, but make sure that there is or any action your doing about it. Even by just announcing in Jum’aa prayer that someone was taking care of those suggestions.

  2. Pingback: Tucson Minaret stats : June-December 2011 « The Tucson Minaret

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