Sheikh Fehmi Naji – El-Imam – 1928 - 2016

There are only a select few of Allah’s creation who can touch the lives of so many, so gently and so warmly with advice, and sincere counsel and leave a lasting impression, such a person was our beloved, His Eminence, Sheikh Fehmi Naji El Imam. (May Allah Grant him Janatal Ferdous)

Sheikh Fehmi began his tireless work for the Muslim community soon after his arrival in Melbourne in 1951. Sheikh Fehmi was instrumental in establishing the Preston Mosque in Melbourne; a national body – Australian Federation of Islamic Societies – presently Muslims Australia AFIC and the Victorian Board of Imams, to name just a few.

Sheikh Fehmi’s foresight and commitment to establish a proud, functional, productive community within Islamic guidelines and within Australian law stands as an exemplary achievement of a determined Muslim in a new country. His lifelong vision of an Australian Muslim identity culminated in the recognition of Sheikh Fehmi as one of the most revered, venerated and respected Muslim leaders in Australia.

The Sheikh’s warm smile and deep blue eyes lifted his audience as soon as he walked in a room. His words encouraged young and old to “do your best with the ability Allah has given you, for your self, for your family, for your community and for your country – Australia”

Sheikh Fehmi, the second Mufti of Australia leaves a legacy as one of the pioneers of Islamic services and multi faith dialogue in Australia . In recognition of his services to Australia, Sh. Fehmi was awarded the Order of Australia medal.

The former Victorian Governor Sir James Gobbo in his tribute to our beloved Sheik Fehmi, said , “you cannot imagine a multicultural, multiethnic society without imagining a multi-faith society.”

“Shaykh Fehmi knew this and its spirit resonated from his work in the community,” Sir James said.

“I think we were very fortunate to have the capacity and understanding of Sh Fehmi [with us]. I hope you all share in my gratitude for having such a great leader in this city.”


In the words of Sheik Fehmi: 6 May 2001 – ABC Compass - The Sheikh of Melbourne

  • Sheikh Fehmi Iman

    'This is Islam, when you are showing something, you are doing something, you are offering something. Everybody can sit in the corner of his home and pray day and night, but it's not good enough to do that if you don't really play your role in the society and offer good things in society.

  • Gary Bouma

    - Professor of Sociology, Monash University
    'Well anybody who can promote religious tolerance, can promote understanding between two communities, the general Australian community and the specifically Muslim-Australian community deserves an award.

    The Sheikh has been busy doing this for many years, quietly and in an unassuming kind of way.

  • Sheikh Fehmi Iman

    If you come to this world and you don't leave behind you any good deeds, left behind you to be known by 'why did you come into this world for nothing'. You have to always leave something behind you, and let this something behind you, serve all the people who are still alive after you.

Muslims Australia AFIC acknowledges Sheikh Fehmi’s role and his pioneering efforts towards the future of Muslims in Australia.

“To Allah we belong, and to Him we shall return” May Allah accept our beloved Sheikh in His gardens of paradise. Ameen.