The Grand Mufti of Egypt, Shawki Allam, is accused of plagiarising an article from Islamist thinker and former leading member of the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, Sayed Kotb.
Allam allegedly copied two pages from Kotb’s prominent “Fi-Zelal Al-Qur'an” ("In the Shade of the Qur'an”), published in 1954, and spun them into an article on the virtue of fasting, which he credited and attributed to himself.
The allegedly plagiarised article was published in the Egyptian newspaper Youm7 on Tuesday.
The Grand Mufti’s office was not available for comment.
The article also caused an outcry on social media who condemned the plagiarism act. The controversy comes after recent orders by the Ministry of Endowment to remove extremist books from libraries around the country.
Mohamed El Sagheer, a former advisor to the Ministry of Endowments, criticised the plagiarism act on his Twitter account saying, “At the exact same time as the minister of endowments burns Kotb’s books, the Grand Mufti copies his words in an article about fasting.”
Qutb, a leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood in the 1950s and 1960s, was executed after being convicted of plotting the attempted assassination of Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nasser. Qutb is considered the guiding theorist of radical Islam.
On Monday, Egypt’s Minister of Religious Endowments, Mohamed Mokhtar, issued orders to remove any books, cassettes or CDs that incite violence and radicalism from mosque libraries around the country.
Allam is the 19th and current Grand Mufti of Egypt, succeeding Ali Gomaa.