In the name of Allah, may His peace, blessings, and salutations be upon Muhammad (ﷺ), his family and his companions
The Ummah is rejoicing at their prayers being answered by Allah, with the victory of President Erdogan over Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu in Turkey over the weekend. This watershed race saw the Islamically-inclined candidates scarcely defeat an anti-Islamic agenda in an extremely tight race that provides many lessons for Muslims to reflect on.
Who is celebrating and who isn’t?
I don’t think the Muslim Ummah in contemporary history has witnessed a leader whose victory was prayed for and celebrated as much as Erdogan’s was in this landmark election.
We have seen swathes of Muslims and their leaders show joy and jubilation at this victory, such as those from:
- Central Asia
- Palestinians almost everywhere in the world
- Sunnis in Iraq and Lebanon
- Libya (apart from Haftar)
- Many Muslims in other countries of Africa, Europe, North America, and even Central and South America.
Among those who are hugely disappointed are the ruling classes in most of the EU countries, if not all, Iran and anti-Sunni Rāfidhīs around the world, many Arab leaders, and of course, the USA.
What is our duty?
1 | Show thanks
The Muslim Ummah should thank Allah for this great blessing He has bestowed upon us whilst in such a precarious position.
وَمَا بِكُم مِّن نِّعْمَةٍ فَمِنَ اللَّهِ
“And whatever you have of favour – it is from Allah.” 
And Allah says,
لَئِن شَكَرْتُمْ لَأَزِيدَنَّكُمْ
“If you are grateful, I will surely increase you [in favour].” 
Why do we show thanks?
As many have been discussing for the last few months, the victory of Erdogan in this particular election was effectively an empowerment of the Muslim Ummah on the global stage.
In fact, the so-called “Islamists” are forcing those who hate them to accept them as major players in the international community.
2 | “Islamists” be heedful
The so-called “Islamists” need to work hard and work together to utilise this victory to benefit the Ummah all over the world.
وَتَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْبِرِّ وَالتَّقْوَىٰ ۖ وَلَا تَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْإِثْمِ وَالْعُدْوَانِ
“And co-operate in righteousness and piety, but do not co-operate in sin and aggression.” 
Muslim activists and Islamic movements also need to be wary as they may face more challenges as Islamophobic countries try to suppress them further after this victory.
3 | Let this encourage others
This victory will—inshāAllah—encourage more and more good Muslims to take political activism and engagement more seriously after seeing many years of suppression and disappointment.
We have struggled for the last century since the fall of the Khilafah to have a practical model for governance to assume our role in moral leadership of mankind and stewardship of Allah’s creation.
What has been happening in Turkey has shown a model for Muslim leaders to follow to revive Islam in their respective countries.
4 | Make du’ā
We must all make du’ā that Allah keeps Erdogan, his party, and the people of Turkey on the straight path, and help them serve the Ummah more, give them more tawfīq and more ikhlās. We ask Allah to protect Erdogan in particular since, if the events of the last century teach us one thing, it is that the enemies of Islam will not stop at anything to try to get rid of confident and influential Muslims active in the political arena. May Allah grant us what is best for the Ummah.
It may be surprising that despite what Erdogan did for Turkey, just under half of the electorate voted against him. Despite all the material successes, the culture of religious tolerance he helped create in defiance of militant secularism, half of his country does not want him.
This shows how complex it is to run a country in today’s world. Political activists who have zeal to implement Islam should think very carefully about their plans and strategies and assess whether they are practical enough to suit the diverse set of challenges on the ground—or if they are too idealistic and impractical.
This just underscores the need for genuine “Islamic” Muslims to be engaged in public life, produce critical research, and establish much-needed think-tanks to come up with solutions for today’s challenges.
“Implementing Islam” in a country
Finally, I would like to add a short message for some brothers and sisters that easily criticise the likes of Erdogan and accuse him of “not implementing Sharia”.
Do not be over-simplistic when discussing complex political and legal matters; it is not befitting of the Ummah that was sent to lead mankind to come across as naïve and gullible, let alone have their zeal exploited and be manipulated.
وَإِذَا جَاءَهُمْ أَمْرٌ مِّنَ الْأَمْنِ أَوِ الْخَوْفِ أَذَاعُوا بِهِ ۖ وَلَوْ رَدُّوهُ إِلَى الرَّسُولِ وَإِلَىٰ أُولِي الْأَمْرِ مِنْهُمْ لَعَلِمَهُ الَّذِينَ يَسْتَنبِطُونَهُ مِنْهُمْ ۗ وَلَوْلَا فَضْلُ اللَّهِ عَلَيْكُمْ وَرَحْمَتُهُ لَاتَّبَعْتُمُ الشَّيْطَانَ إِلَّا قَلِيلًا
“And when there comes to them information about [public] security or fear, they spread it around. But if they had referred it back to the Messenger or to those of authority among them, then the ones who [can] draw correct conclusions from it would have known about it. And if not for the favour of Allah upon you and His mercy, you would have followed Satan, except for a few.” 
The implementation of Islam and Sharia is a contextual process—this is part of the genius of the Sharia of the Final Messenger (ﷺ), which allowed it to exist and flourish anywhere and at any time until the Last Hour.
It is not the time to go into detail here about this phenomenon of the Sharia, but suffice it to say that if the context allows for 20 per cent implementation of Sharia rulings, then the one who implements that 20 per cent is in fact applying 100 per cent of the Sharia.
As Allah says,
فَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُمْ
“So fear Allah as much as you are able…” 
The Sharia is not like a modern country’s law or a list of imperatives as per the moral philosophy of other traditions—which are always bound to end up in contradiction or utopic visions suffocated by real life. It is a living and dynamic guidance that does not change to the extent that it loses its identity, but at the same time can adapt to any time and place.
May Allah give us all the tawfīq to revive the Ummah and Islam on an international stage, which will be in the best interest of not only the Ummah, or even humanity at large, but all of creation.
May Allah’s peace, blessings and salutations be upon the Final Messenger Muhammad ﷺ, his family, companions and followers.
 al-Qur’ān, 16:53
 al-Qur’ān, 14:7
 al-Qur’ān, 5:2
 al-Qur’ān, 4:83
 al-Qur’ān, 64:16