SINGAPORE: The Emeritus President of Religious Rehabilitation Group (RRG), Ustaz Ali Haji Mohamed, died on Friday (Mar 17) at the age of 75.
Ustaz Ali co-founded the RRG in 2003 and also established the RRG Resource and Counselling Centre in 2014.
The RRG is a group of volunteer Islamic scholars and teachers who provide religious counselling to those detained under the Internal Security Act, and conduct outreach against extremist ideas and correct misinterpretations of Islamic concepts.
He was also a Malay-Muslim community leader, having sat on the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS) council and served as the chairman of Khadijah Mosque.
Ustaz Ali’s son told BERITAmediacorp that his father was found motionless and not breathing at around 9am on Friday. He was rushed to Sengkang General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead later.
His death was due to heart failure, said Ustaz Dr Mohamed Ali, who is also the co-chairman of RRG.
CONDOLENCES FROM SINGAPORE LEADERS
President Halimah Yacob paid tribute to the respected Malay-Muslim community leader, whom she said “made a significant difference to the religious life of the Muslim community and to Singapore, as a society defined by diversity”.
She added in her Facebook post: “He played an instrumental role in establishing RRG, where he rallied the community to counter mischaracterisations about Islam.
“He worked tirelessly with many assatizahs (religious teachers) to support efforts at rehabilitating those who had chosen the wrong paths and to reintegrate them back into society.
“He saw this as an important mission which the Muslim community need to undertake to protect our faith.”
In a condolence letter addressed to Dr Mohamed, Mr Lee said he was “deeply saddened by the passing of your beloved father”.
“I have known Ustaz Ali for many years,” he added. “In my many conversations with him, I have benefitted much from his understanding of the Malay-Muslim community, and his thoughtful, supportive and honest advice.
“Ustaz Ali will be deeply missed. I hope you find peace and comfort knowing that he has touched the lives of many generations of Singaporeans, and will be remembered for his many contributions to the community and country.”
Mr Lee also highlighted how Ustaz Ali’s involvement in the RRG had been crucial in building trust between Singaporean Muslims and non-Muslims, and had strengthened racial and religious harmony here.
For his work in the community, Ustaz Ali was conferred several public awards, including the Meritorious Service Medal in 2018 and the Public Service Star in 2010.