The model of governance espoused by Caliph Umar Abdul Aziz was a “paragon of virtue” as a ruler.
Caliph Umar governed the vast domains of Islam from his seat in Medina in the 8th century, a period when the religion was in full flower and, under administrators like Umar, a model of justice and equity, to non-Muslims even.
The model of governance practiced and espoused by Caliph Umar in which justice for all, including non-Muslims, was the ideal and was upheld as exemplary of the faith.
Umar Caliph did not insist on the payment of the tax (jizyah), obligatory of non-Muslims residing under Muslim rule.
Caliph Umar’s discounting this tax must have been due to his perception that its imposition, in some instances, would detract from the overriding imperative of justice.
Justice was the overriding imperative in any model of Muslim governance.
the 29th century Muslim thinker Mohamed Iqbal’s call in his magnum opus, ‘The Reconstruction of Muslim Thought’, for fresh interpretations of the higher ideals of the syariah.
Traditional interpretations that remained mired in a bygone age gave Islam the look of an obsolete faith rather than one that was dynamic and alert to the need to reflect the religion’s ideals in modern times.
A ruler Caliph Umar was always consciousness of what the people were saying and accordingly subjected his methods to the tests modern democrats set great store by – the maxims of justice and equity.
Extracts from the Source_Mkini’s Caliph Umar lauded at integrity conference by Terence Netto