The management of Redbridge Islamic Centre (RIC) issues the following statement in relation to recent social media posts made by Ustadh Asim Khan.
1. Ustadh Asim Khan has not been an employee/Imam of RIC for many years now. Since then, he has operated as a freelance contractor for RIC in a self-employed capacity, providing limited services, primarily to lead Friday (Jumuah) prayers twice a month.
2. Like many other learned individuals the RIC has on its Jumuah roster, Ustadh Asim Khan’s services to the RIC was limited to delivering Friday sermons twice a month and some occasional lectures and prayers. Therefore, like many others on the roster, he was not one of the Imams of the mosque, rather a visiting ‘khatib’. For the record, the RIC has three official Imams who are employees of the mosque and have greater and regular responsibilities than those we contract to be on the Jumuah roster.
3. This being the case, claims that Ustadh Asim Khan has resigned from the post of ‘Imam of RIC’ is incorrect and misleading. He has not been an Imam of the mosque nor an employee for many years now.
4. We are of course grateful to all individuals (khaatibs) who are on our Jumuah roster as external contractors. They do a fantastic job in ensuring the Jumuah needs of the community are fulfilled. This doesn't, however, mean that they are officially Imams of the mosque or that they have a right to give that impression to others. To do so is misleading the public.
5. In Ustadh Asim Khan’s tweet he stated that the reason for his departure is "due to a disagreement with the committee that could not be resolved". We are disappointed with the choice of words here. The vague statement has caused a lot of suspicion, speculation, and ill-feeling towards the mosque by the public, as can be seen from the responses to that tweet.
The only disagreement we are aware of is in relation to the usage of the title 'Imam of RIC'.
6. RIC’s normal and preferred approach has always been to keep internal affairs private and confidential for the honour and respect of the individuals involved. This is especially at a time where there is heightened concerns in the Muslim world that requires greater unity. However, we have felt compelled to make this statement to address the misconceptions, suspicions, and assumptions resulting from Ustadh Asim Khan’s public statements.
7. We have written to Ustadh Asim Khan privately to raise our concerns about his public statements.
8. RIC’s work, as evidenced since our establishment, points towards unity and collectively supporting one another. We ask those who hold any concerns to review our work and to speak to trustees if any further clarity is needed.