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Burundi: Muslim group translates Qur’an into Kirundi

26th Dec 2017
Burundi: Muslim group translates Qur’an into Kirundi

BUJUMBURA, Burundi (AA): A Burundian Muslim association has translated the Holy Quran into Kirundi, one of the two official languages of the East African country, a religious leader told Anadolu Agency on Tuesday.

Sheikh Sadiki Kajandi, the president and legal representative of the Islamic Community of Burundi (COMIBU), said, “This is a great event for us, because on Monday we received the first translation of the Quran in Kirundi. This is a first since the introduction of Islam to Burundi.”

The translation work was done by the Association for Mutual Aid and Solidarity (AMES), a local Muslim association.

AMES Chairperson Sheikh Abdi John Habonimana told Anadolu Agency that the translation had taken quite a long time — a total of eight years.

“We thank all Muslims and non-Muslims, including university professors, who contributed to the process of making the Quran accessible in Kirundi,” he said.

Kirundi is spoken across Burundi and also in parts of Tanzania, the Democratic Republic of Congo, and Uganda.

The Islamic community accounts for 10 percent of Burundi’s total population of 11 million.

The Muslims are mainly located in such urban areas as Gitega and Rumonge as well as the capital Bujumbura.

Bujumbura is home to a strong Islamic community dominated by West African traders from Senegal, Niger, Guinea, and Mali. There is also an Arab community.

According to historians, Islam arrived in Burundi around the 19th century.

[Map of Burundi by US Dept of Sate/Public Domain]

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