Our Vote Can Make Or Break The Nation

Humans evolved as social beings. Our ancestor from antiquity used to live in groups. Group offered protection and cooperation in hunting, gathering and sharing food to make group membership attractive to the individual human beings of hunter-gatherer epoch. The group dynamics suggest that some form of coordination may benefit group activities and that beneficial coordination comes with leadership. Research shows that groups with leaders generally do better than groups without a leader.

The core premise of evolutionary leadership theory is that the primary function of leadership lies in facilitating group performance and effectiveness.

It means that if the leader is good, the effectiveness and performance of the group will be good and if the leader is bad, the effectiveness and performance of the group will be bad.

Then if leadership benefits group performance then it is in the evolutionary interests of individuals to select a leader.

It is a general principle in Islam that do not be in a leaderless group; appoint a leader. “When three men travel together, they should make one of them their leader.” Source: Abu Dawud, on the Authority of Abu Sa’id ‘Al-Khudri

A country and nation is also a big group of people and therefore like other groups it is natural and necessary to select a leader to run their affair.

This selection of leadership in democratic nations is known as the election which they do through the voting.

There are few things as exciting and charged as the Prime Minister elections that occur every five years in Pakistan. We all know the drill " we go to our designated voting location, get in our booth, do our civic duty and vote.”

Leaders of the world and of any country particular play most important role to achieve genuine happiness of its people. A good and capable leader leads its people and country to a peace and prosperity, while the cruel and incapable leader brings people to the world of sufferings and ultimately ruin the country.

The leaders are to be chosen by voters to represent their interests, care for the welfare of the people and also drive the country to greater heights. In this context, leadership is an important area that needs detailed discussion and focus.

If we see how nations changed their fate then we come to summarize that it also happened through voting and electoral procedures.

Lee Kuan Yew, the first Prime Minister of Singapore, who governed the country for three decades. Under his leadership, the country transformed from “third world to the first world in a single generation”.

Kim Dae-Jung was a South Korean politician who served as President of South Korea from 1998 to 2003. He took office in the midst of the economic crisis that hit South Korea severely. He vigorously pushed economic reform and restructure in the process significantly altering the landscape of the South Korean economy. After the economy shrank by 5.8 percent in 1998, it grew 10.2 percent in 1999 during his presidency and put South Korea on the path of economic success and prosperity.

Mahathir bin Mohamad is a Malaysian politician currently serving as the Prime Minister of Malaysia for the second time.

During Mahathir’s first tenure as Prime Minister, Malaysia experienced a period of rapid modernization and economic growth and his government initiated a series of bold infrastructure projects which converted Malaysia to a modern and developed economy.

And there are many such miraculous stories of countries growth and development that how good leaders changed the fate of their nation and the basic ingredient behind their selection and their nations marvelous success was through the public casting vote and electing them to lead their nation.

It was the vote of a common man, the public which ensured the growth and development of their nations. If they didn’t use their right to vote in bringing to country driving seat a good leader than this all would not be possible.

The democratic election of a leader was the model on which the city of Madinah was founded is the best example of it. The Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him), was invited by people of Medina, became its ruler by the choice of all its citizens, which included Jewish and polytheist tribes. A delegation from Medina, consisting of the representatives of the twelve important clans of Medina, invited Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) as a neutral outsider to serve as the chief arbitrator for the entire community. There was fighting in Yathrib (Medina) mainly involving its Arab and Jewish inhabitants for around a hundred years before 620. The recurring slaughters and disagreements over the resulting claims, especially after the battle of Bu’ath in which all the clans were involved, made it obvious to them that the tribal conceptions of blood-feud and an eye for an eye were no longer workable unless there was one man with authority to adjudicate in disputed cases. The delegation from Medina pledged themselves and their fellow-citizens to accept Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) into their community as a leader.

The selection made by people of Medina resulted in establishment of an ideal state which has no other example in history of humanity by developing a binding social contract, a pact signed by all the tribal leaders electing Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) as the leader, and establishing laws binding the tribes to cooperation, assistance in defense of the city, and the protection of its inhabitants known as “Constitution of Medina.”

Then the history is a witness that how the illiterate and barbarous tribe rose from the desert of Arabia and took over the reign of the world in their hands.

This is what effective leadership results in but such great change does not only depend on the leader but on the common people who use their rights first and select an appropriate leader for them. The first step is of the election of the leader and for the Pakistani nation, the moment to take that first step is arriving on 25 July 2018, to select the most effective individual to lead the nation.

It is evident from the above examples that utilizing our right to elect a leader and the power of the vote is not a thing to waste. It’s a necessity that must be availed. The nations who utilize this gift effectively succeed s.

The election and voting is a process of not only choosing an individual to be given leadership responsibility but to select best among the available candidates.

At times, voting becomes necessary. Sayyiduna Abu Bakr narrates that the Messenger of Allah (Peace Be Upon Him) said: “If people see an oppressor and don’t prevent him, then it is very likely that Allah will include all of them in the punishment” (Sunan Tirmizi & Suna n Abu Dawud). Therefore, if you see open oppression and transgression which are characteristics of our corrupt and incapable leaders, and despite having the capability of preventing this oppression by giving your vote, you do n’t do so, then in the light of this Hadith you will be sinful …”

It’s that crucial time that to stop the oppression of masses by the corrupt and malicious oppressor, we have to use our vote.

According to the Quran, the ruler of a Muslim state has to be elected by the people. It means that a Muslim state should be a perfect democratic state.

The Quran says: “They (the Muslims) decide all their collective issues through mutual consultation.” (Al-Shura-32:38)

Than the time to elect the ruler of our state has came near and there cannot be any collective issue greater than this for our nation and there can not be any mutual consultation more desirable and deep in nature than casting our votes for electing a sincere and capable leader who can safely anchor the sinking ship of the nation.

Voting in a way is giving a testimony in favor of the person/party whom one is voting. The way false testimony is a major sin, to vote in favor of a candidate that one knows is not worthy will also be unlawful and a major sin.

Allah Most High says:

“Allah commands you to render back your trusts to those whom they are due.” (Surah al-Nisa, 58)

When one is giving his vote, he is actually giving testimony on the fact that the candidate (or party) is trustworthy in his beliefs and actions, and better than the other candidates.

In a situation where there is no worthy candidate, then the vote should be given to the one who is the better and more trustworthy than the other candidates.

Therefore, to give a vote on the pure basis of personal connections, family relationship, and the like (when one is aware that the one given the vote is not worthy) will be considered impermissible.

The vote should be given to the candidate that one believes will give people their rights, prevent oppression, and so on.

As for those, who knowingly support a person who is a tyrant and oppressive as our previous national leaders proved to be that it is like being part of that tyranny and oppression. And it is said that:

“One who walks with a tyrant, in the full knowledge that he is a tyrant, in order to strengthen him, is such as has already left the fold of I slam.”
Source: Al-Bayhaqi, on the Authority of Aus Bin Shurahabil

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1 Comment

  1. Ali says

    Excellent post.

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