✕ CLOSE Online Special City News Entrepreneurship Environment Factcheck Everything Woman Home Front Islamic Forum Life Xtra Property Travel & Leisure Viewpoint Vox Pop Women In Business Art and Ideas Bookshelf Labour Law Letters
Click Here To Listen To Trust Radio Live

Tigray crisis: Ethiopia to repair al-Nejashi, Africa’s first mosque

The Ethiopian government has promised to repair a centuries-old mosque that was damaged during the conflict in the northern Tigray region. The al-Nejashi Mosque was…

The Ethiopian government has promised to repair a centuries-old mosque that was damaged during the conflict in the northern Tigray region. The al-Nejashi Mosque was reportedly shelled. Its dome, the minaret and tombs of Islamic figures were damaged. Locals believed al-Nejashi was built by the first Muslims to migrate to Africa during the time of Prophet Muhammad.

They had fled persecution in Mecca and were given refuge in what was then the Kingdom of Aksum.

Local Muslims believed that 15 disciples of Prophet Muhammad are buried in the damaged tombs.

The mosque is near Wukro town, some 800km (500 miles) from Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa.

A Turkish aid agency launched a project in 2015 to renovate the mosque, saying it wanted to “preserve the heritage” of the monument and wanted it to become a major destination for “religious tourism”. The mosque was damaged during the month-long military operation that led to the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) being ousted from power in the region on 28 November.

A Belgium-based non-profit organisation, Europe External Programme with Africa, reported on 18 December that al-Nejashi Mosque was “first bombed and later looted by Ethiopian and Eritrean troops”.

The government has imposed heavy restrictions on the media in Tigray, making it difficult to know what exactly is happening. Access to Tigray has also been restricted for aid workers.

In a BBC Amharic interview, the deputy director of the Ethiopian Heritage Preservation Authority, Abebaw Ayalew, said a team would be sent to inspect the damage to both the mosque and church before they are repaired.

“These sites are not only places of worship. It is also the heritage of the whole of Ethiopia,” he said.

VERIFIED: It is now possible to live in Nigeria and earn salary in US Dollars with premium domains, you can earn as much as $12,000 (₦18 Million).
Click here to start.