The passing of Dr Shaukat Ali Thokan has been met with immense sadness throughout South Africa. 

His death, following a period of illness, will leave a huge void in the country’s Muslim community. 

A founder-member of the Muslim Youth Movement (MYM) which was formed during the early 70s, Dr Thokan will be remembered for the gigantic contribution he made in guiding and leading the nascent Islamic Movement. 

Combining his medical practice with the demanding challenges of shaping the destiny of young Muslims via innovative socio-political projects which defined the dynamism of the MYM, was no easy task. Yet Dr Thokan excelled in doing so in his quest to make the voices and aspirations of the youth relevant. 

His humble demeanour and selfless commitment were outstanding qualities which endeared him to enthusiastic young members of the MYM, eager to confront societal challenges and injustices during the notorious era of apartheid. 

His lasting legacy which today has become the dominant Zakaah institution in South Africa, is founding the South African National Zakaah Fund (SANZAF), as a project of the MYM during the 70s. It was a stormy ride, given the unfounded reservations by some clergy, but Dr Thokan weathered the storm in a calm and dignified manner. 

His leadership of the Islamic Movement which under the umbrella of the MYM gave rise and shelter to a host of national projects – from research to media, and from dawah to tarbiyya – was characterised by modesty, respect and integrity. 

South Africa is the poorer for yet again losing a visionary who led by example.The Media Review Network has lost a close confidant and supporter. 

May Allah accept his sacrifices in pursuit of justice and reward him with eternal bliss in Jannah. Aameen 

Iqbal Jassat

Executive member

Media Review Network

Johannesburg

Iqbal Jassat

Iqbal Jassat is an acclaimed writer, analyst and commentator and one of the founder members of MRN. His analysis is featured regularly in mainstream and alternate media outlets around the world.