Among the comprehensiveness of Islam and its suitability for the complete transformation of humans is that it places much importance on leadership. It spelt out rights and duties of both leaders and the led in order to achieve a just and balance society. The regulation of leadership in this style is a demonstration of Allah’s infinite wisdom and knowledge as the human society cannot achieve its humane meaning and worth without this. For man’s life to be meaningful there must be a central and a well-recognized structure for the planning and execution of such plans and initiatives that will be beneficial to the society.
Again, the purpose for the creation of this universe is for the sole aim of establishing Allah’s supremacy. This is done by executing His laws and orders in strict accordance with what the Messengers came to teach. This cannot be without a nomination of righteous and pious servants of Allah to serve as leaders, hence, the need for Muslim leadership.
While this is the established truth, leaders in Islam enjoy such rights from Allah that helps them carry out their duty as willed by Allah and exemplified by the holy Prophet of Islam (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). The following are some of these rights:
1-recognition of his leadership. The first step towards the obedience and love of the Muslim leader is that, his leadership be recognized. This recognition dictates surrendering oneself before him and not going against him in opposition. The holy prophet peace and blessings of Allah be upon him said: ““Whoever reneges regarding obedience (to righteous and sincere Leaders) and abandons the Jama’ah (the community of the believers) then died, then his death is one of Jahiliyyah (ignorance).”
2. Obeying him explicitly and intrinsically in lawful matters. Among the outstanding rights of a Muslim leader is that he should be obeyed inwardly and outwardly in the lawful issues that emanates from him directly or through his appointed agents. The realization of this right is pivotal in the achievement of law and order in the Muslim community as its scope of implementation is very vast. It comprises all rules and regulations of every sphere of the society ranging from traffic rules, school rules, highway regulations, security code of conducts and many more. A Muslim whiles giving obedience to these rules must do that sincerely hoping to gain proximity to Allah through them. Why not, when it is Allah who enjoined this right. Allah says:
ا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَطِيعُوا اللَّهَ وَأَطِيعُوا الرَّسُولَ وَأُولِي الْأَمْرِ مِنكُمْ
“ O ye who believe! Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger, and those charged with authority among you…” In addition, the Prophet (SAW) said: “Hear and obey, even if an Ethiopian slave whose face looks like a raisin was appointed your commander or leader”.
3-Offering good counseling to leaders in courtesy. it is incumbent on the Muslims to enjoin their leaders and help them do the right and abstain from abominable acts. This however must be done with civility, decorum, leniency and politeness. It must be devoid of rudeness and harshness. Leniency never accompanies anything except getting it beautified, and harshness and roughness never accompanied anything except turning it ugly. This is part of the well wish which the prophetic tradition directed towards when it proclaims:” religion is well wishing. He was asked; to whom? He said to Allah, His book, His Prophets and the leaders of the Muslims and their common folk”
4-Uniting the hearts upon his obedience. It is compulsory upon the Muslims to work to unite the hearts of one mother upon the obedience of their leader. The absence of this leads to divisions and disunity which is the main cause of the loss of strength and honor. Allah says:
وَلَا تَنَازَعُوا فَتَفْشَلُوا وَتَذْهَبَ رِيحُكُمْ ۖ وَاصْبِرُوا ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ مَعَ الصَّابِرِينَ
“…and fall into no disputes, lest ye lose heart and your power depart; and be patient and persevering: For Allah is with those who patiently persevere :”(anfal: 46)
In conclusion, it is very important to note that, the rights of the Muslim leader are many and cannot all be listed here. He enjoys all such rights in order to help him execute Allah’s legislation whilest carrying out his duties.