Has Siraj Wahhaj become an NOI PR man?

The long-anticipated moment finally arrived. The chance to ask Siraj Wahhaj questions that have lingered for years- regarding his continued association with Louis Farrakhan. Thus myself and another brother (who requested his name not be mentioned in this essay) spoke with Siraj Wahhaj at length during a September 7, 2014 fundraiser for Al-Huda School. The meeting was a surreal eye-opener. We approached Siraj during a lull in the evening’s events, in a cordial and brotherly manner, praising him for his dawah efforts. Thereafter, we cut straight to the chase. We queried him about the purpose of his repeated NOI overtures, specifically his presence at their Philadelphia fundraiser just two days earlier. He replied by repeating the same mantra he’s stated countless times before, that Farrakhan ‘is coming to Islam’, how the NOI has adopted Ramadan in its proper time, how he himself refused to participate in Farrakhan’s 1995 Million Man March, and that Farrakhan is bringing 10,000 followers on Hajj, etc.
However when Siraj saw our deadpan response, he immediately knew we were not the usual starstruck autograph seekers who gobble up any gibberish a celebrity speaks. Visibly caught off guard, he suddenly became awkwardly defensive and instantly changed his strategy to name-dropping. He claimed for instance that NOI member Carlos Muhammad, is one of Farrakhan’s staff who is supposedly “adopting the Sunnah.” Little did Siraj know that I had met Carlos some months before and I told him so. Siraj was stunned. Indeed, Siraj’s claim is light years from the truth, as Carlos is well-known as a staunch Farrakhan propagandist and official ‘NOI archivist’ who is on record as publicly defending the false prophet, Elijah Muhammad. I suddenly had the eerie feeling that Siraj has elsewhere faced similar questions, as his verbal responses and body language abruptly became unnatural and canned, as if rehearsed. He then repeated the same responses that he has given to audiences in numerous YouTube videos, only this time his responses didn’t elicit so much as a flinch from us.
Nathari's original tweet.
Nathari’s original tweet.

We then dropped the bombshell revelation on him, about what Amin Nathari reported on Twitter, that during Siraj’s Sept. 5, 2014 Philadelphia Jumuah khutbah, Siraj himself praised false prophet Elijah Muhammad and said the Muslim world needs to appreciate Elijah. Instead of denying Nathari’s report, Siraj looked befuddled and asked who posted it, which we instantly found revealing, since Siraj himself was the first person Amin Nathari CC’d on the post! What made Siraj’s surprise appear even more disingenuous, is the fact that had Nathari’s report been inaccurate, then why didn’t Siraj himself tweet a response and clarification? Why instead was he silent? And why was he asking us for the name of the person when he himself was the first recipient of the post? His astonishment thus appeared entirely feigned.

Nevertheless, we kept the pressure on Siraj, asking him to explain why is it that in spite of over 40 years of excuses and waiting, the NOI still insists on their website and elsewhere on ‘Point #12’, claiming Allah is a man? Why is it, that in spite of their adoption of Sunni practices on any given day, the NOI negates it all in the same breath by insisting Elijah is the last Messenger of Allah? We told Siraj that the single consistent thing in which the NOI has succeeded, is unprecedented total inversion of the shahadah, where they routinely cast out the concept of negation and by doing so, issues of aqeedah (belief) become in their view, issues of fiqh (jurisprudence) worthy of endless debate! Siraj’s line of reasoning then entirely fell apart and he started contradicting himself. For example, he said that he has given up hope on Farrakhan ever changing, thus he is now focusing on Farrakhan’s followers (!) and that some of them were salafis (as if we were going to desist, back off and say, mashallah!) Why even make such a claim? I agree with Siraj, there ARE salafis in the NOI. In kufr that is!
وَقُلْ جَاءَ الْحَقُّ وَزَهَقَ الْبَاطِلُ ۚ إِنَّ الْبَاطِلَ كَانَ زَهُوقًا
The brother with me then reminded Siraj that the late Sultan Muhammad (Sultan Rahman’s father) made takfeer of Elijah and prior to his death in 1990, Sultan authorized specific people to preach tawheed and the principles of wala wal bara in Masjid Muhammad in DC. Siraj was also told that he himself is not getting younger, and that if he is sincere in his claims of ‘bringing the NOI to Islam’, he should then make a clear written, public statement making bara’ from the NOI’s false teachings.
To this, Siraj gave only a barely audible, muttered response before excusing himself from our presence. Thus what I fear is that Siraj is shaping to be a willing partner in the entire NOI ruse. An official NOI public relations man. Which raises a more serious question: does Siraj Wahhaj himself somehow believe that NOI beliefs are Islamically acceptable? Siraj realized that his usual excuses and explanations weren’t working this time, and he seemed to scramble for an ethereal exit door looking for a way out. What underscored this, was his refusal later that same evening during the same fundraiser, when he and Dr. Abdullah Idris made rounds to each guest table to encourage guests to contribute to the fundraiser, how Siraj deliberately passed the table where the brother and I sat, going to peripheral guest tables instead. Again, his non-verbal actions spoke volumes.
Quite frankly, I regret to say that I have not felt what I felt that night since May 14, 1993, when in Manchester, England, W.D. Mohammed publicly refused under similar questioning, to retract his numerous heretical claims. In each instance, one in the UK in 1993 and the other in the US in 2014, we witnessed the brains of falsehood smashed, and I can say this time that if what I sense is true, then inshallah it is only a matter of time before everyone witnesses the house of cards’ collapse. May Allah speed their collapse.

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