50 % of UK Imams are of Pakistani Origin

UK imams predominantly Pakistani: study
Daily Times, July 7, 2007

LONDON: A study of 300 mosques in the UK found that 50 percent of the head clerics were from Pakistan, 20 percent from Bangladesh and 15 percent from India. The study, carried out by Chester University on behalf of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), was aimed at gauging the ability of the clerics to adapt to the needs of modern Britain. Around 66 percent spoke Urdu as a first language with 52 percent delivering sermons in Urdu. Only six percent of those preaching in the UK spoke English as a first language. The research found that only eight percent of the clerics preaching in British mosques were born in the UK. The report acknowledged that the use of English was becoming more prevalent in Friday sermons in the country but said that more research was required to assess the frequency and quality. Professor Ron Geaves, the author of the report, said, “The study reveals a deeply conservative body of individuals maintaining traditional languages and qualifications, and still largely recruited from the place of origin.” The clerics were “overwhelmingly” qualified in the traditional Islamic curriculum, he said, which had changed little since medieval times. ppi

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