Article 19: It is not permitted for anyone to be in charge of ruling or any action considered to be from the ruling unless they are male, free, adult, sane, just, capable of carrying out the responsibility, and it is not permitted for anyone other than a Muslim.
Allah (swt) has decisively prohibited for a disbeliever to be a ruler over the Muslims, as Allah (swt) says
((وَلَنْ يَجْعَلَ اللَّهُ لِلْكَافِرِينَ عَلَى الْمُؤْمِنِينَ سَبِيلًا (141)))
“And never will Allah give the disbelievers over the believers a way [to overcome them].” (TMQ 4:141), and to make the disbeliever a ruler over the Muslims is to grant him a way over them, and Allah (swt) categorically forbade that through His (swt) use of the letter “never” which is an indication that the prohibition of the disbeliever having a way over the Muslims, in other words, for the disbeliever to be a ruler over them, is a decisive prohibition and so it conveys that it has been made Haram. Additionally, Allah (swt) made it a condition that the witness for the return to one’s wife after divorce has to be Muslim; Allah (swt) says
((فَإِذَا بَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَأَمْسِكُوهُنَّ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ فَارِقُوهُنَّ بِمَعْرُوفٍ وَأَشْهِدُوا ذَوَيْ عَدْلٍ مِنْكُمْ))
“And when they have [nearly] fulfilled their term, either retain them according to acceptable terms or part with them according to acceptable terms. And bring to witness two just men from among you.” (TMQ 65:2), and the understanding taken is not to take from other than among you. Also, the witness in debts has to be a Muslim; Allah (swt) says
((وَاسْتَشْهِدُوا شَهِيدَيْنِ مِنْ رِجَالِكُمْ))
“And bring to witness two witnesses from among your men.” (TMQ 2:282);in other words, not from men other than yours. So if a condition for witness in these two issues is that they must be Muslim, then by greater reasoning it is a condition for the ruler to be Muslim. Also, ruling is the implementation of theShari’ahrules and the judgments of the judiciary, and they are ordered to judge according to the Shari’ah, so accordingly it is a condition that they are Muslim. The rulers are those who are charged with authority, and when Allah (swt) ordered the obedience to them and that issues related to security and fear be referred to them, it is made a condition that those charged with authority must be Muslims; Allah (swt) says
((أَطِيعُوا اللَّهَ وَأَطِيعُوا الرَّسُولَ وَأُولِي الْأَمْرِ مِنْكُمْ))
“O you who have believed, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority among you.” (TMQ 4:59) and
((وَإِذَا جَاءَهُمْ أَمْرٌ مِنَ الْأَمْنِ أَوِ الْخَوْفِ أَذَاعُوا بِهِ وَلَوْ رَدُّوهُ إِلَى الرَّسُولِ وَإِلَى أُولِي الْأَمْرِ مِنْهُمْ))
“And when there comes to them information about [public] security or fear, they spread it around. But if they had referred it back to the Messenger or to those of authority among them.” (TMQ 4:83). He (swt) said “from you” in other words, not from other than you, and “among them” in other words, not from other than them. These verses indicate that it is a prerequisite that the one who has authority must be Muslim.
The fact that the Quran did not mention the one in authority except that it was accompanied with a mention that they were Muslims confirms that it is a prerequisite for the ruler to be Muslim. Also, the ruler has complete obedience from the Muslimsand the Muslim is not charged with obeying the disbeliever, since he is commanded by the text only to obey the Muslim who holds the authority; Allah (swt) says
((أَطِيعُوا اللَّهَ وَأَطِيعُوا الرَّسُولَ وَأُولِي الْأَمْرِ مِنْكُمْ))
“O you who have believed, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority among you.” (TMQ 4:59),so the fact that it was ordered to obey those in authority from the Muslims and not other than them is another indication that it is not obligatory to obey the disbeliever who has authorityand there is no ruler without obedience. It cannot be argued that the Muslim is charged with obeying the department manager if they were a disbeliever, since he is not a person of authority but rather he is a civil employee, so obedience to him is due to the command of the person of authority to obey the department manager, and the discussion is about the obedience to one of authority and not the employee. Due to this it would not be correct for someone to be in authority over the Muslims unless he is Muslim, and it is not correct for him to be a disbeliever, so accordingly it is absolutely not permitted for the ruler to be a disbeliever.
As for the condition that the ruler be male, it is due to what was narrated by Abu Bakrah saying “When the Messenger of Allah was informed that the daughter of Kisra had been given the reign over the Persians he said:
«لَنْ يُفْلِحَ قَوْمٌ وَلَّوْا أَمْرَهُمْ امْرَأَةً»
“Never will succeed such a nation that makes a woman their”(reported by Al-Bukhari). The notification of the Prophet of the negation of success for whoever commissions a woman in authority over them is a prohibition of her assignment, since it is from the forms of request. And the fact that this notification came as a censure is an indication that the prohibition is decisive, and accordingly commissioning a woman to the ruling is Haram (forbidden) and it is from this evidence that this condition of ruling is derived.
As for the condition that the ruler be just, this is because Allah (swt) made it a prerequisite that the witness be just; Allah (swt) says
(( وَأَشْهِدُوا ذَوَيْ عَدْلٍ مِنْكُمْ))
“And bring to witness two just men from among you.” (TMQ 65:2), and so the one who is more significant than the witness, such as the ruler, must by greater reasoning also be just. That is because if the just character has been made a condition for the witness then for it to be a condition for the ruler is of a higher priority.
As for the condition of being free, that is because the slave does not possess the independence of conduct for himself, so how can he undertake the governing of other peoples’ affairs. Also, the issue of being enslaved means that the time of the slave belongs to his master.
As for the condition of being an adult, this is because it is not permitted for the ruler to be a child, due to what was reported by Abu Dawud from ‘Ali Bin Abi Talib (ra) who said that the Messenger of Allah said,
«رُفِعَ الْقَلَمُ عَنْ ثَلاَثَةٍ: عَنِ الصَّبِيِّ حَتَّى يَبْلُغَ، وَعَنِ النَّائِمِ حَتَّى يَسْـتَـيْقِظَ، وَعَنِ الْمَعْـتُوهِ حَتَّى يَبْرَأَ»
“The Pen has been lifted from three (their actions are not recorded): A boy till he reaches puberty, a sleeper till he awakes, a lunatic till he is restored to reason.”, and it come with another wording
«رُفِعَ الْقَلَمُ عَنْ ثَلاَثَةٍ: عَنِ الْمَجْنُونِ الْمَغْلُوبِ عَلَى عَقْلِهِ حَتَّى يَفِيقَ، وَعَنِ النَّائِمِ حَتَّى يَسْتَيْقِظَ، وَعَنِ الصَّبِيِّ حَتَّى يَحْتَلِمَ»
“There are three whose actions are not recorded: a lunatic whose mind is deranged till he restored to consciousness, a sleeper till he awakes, and a boy till he reaches puberty.”. And the pen being raised means that it is not correct that he acts independently in his affairs, and he is not responsible according to the Shari’ah, and so accordingly it is not correct that he could be the Khalifah or anything else below him from the positions of ruling since he does not possess the right to act independently. Another evidence for the absence of permission for a child to be the Khalifah is what has been reported in Al-Bukhari
«عن أَبي عَقِيلٍ زُهْرَةَ بْنِ مَعْبَدٍ عَنْ جَدِّهِ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ هِشَامٍ، وَكَانَ قَدْ أَدْرَكَ النَّبِيَّ وَذَهَبَتْ بِهِ أُمُّهُ زَيْنَبُ بِنْتُ حُمَيْدٍ إِلَى رَسُولِ اللَّهِ فَقَالَتْ: يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ، بَايِعْهُ، فَقَالَ النَّبِيُّ هُوَ صَغِيرٌ. فَمَسَحَ رَأْسَهُ وَدَعَا لَهُ ...»
“from Abi Aqil Zuhra Bin Ma’bad, from his grandfather ‘Abd Allah Bin Hisham, who was born during the lifetime of the Prophet that his mother, Zainab bint Humaid has taken him to Allah’s Prophet and said, “O Allah’s Prophet! Take his pledge and allegiance (for Islam). The Prophet said, “He (Abdullah bin Hisham) is a little child,” and passed his hand over his head and invoked Allah for him…”. Therefore, if the pledge of a child is not necessary and he is not obliged to give the pledge to the Khalifah, then by greater reasoning it is not permitted for him to be the Khalifah.
With respect to the condition of being sane, this is because it is not correct for him to be insane, due to the words of the Messenger of Allah
«رُفِعَ الْقَلَمُ عَنْ ثَلاَثَةٍ»
“The pen has been lifted from three (their actions are not recorded)” in which he mentioned
«الْمَجْـنُونِ الْمَغْلُوبِ عَلَى عَـقْلِهِ حَـتَّى يَفِيقَ»
“a lunatic whose mind is deranged till he restored to consciousness”. From the meaning of the raising of the pen is that he is not responsible, since rationality is the focus of responsibility and a condition for the correctness of any transactions. The actions of theKhalifah are with regards to the lawand implementing the Shari’ah injunctions, and so it would not be correct for him to be insane since it is not correct for the insane person to act independently with regards to his own affairs, so ,therefore, by greater reasoning it stands that it would not be correct for him to have authority over the people’s affairs.
As for the condition that he should be capable of carrying out the responsibility, this is from what is necessitated from the pledge with respect to the Khalifah and necessitated from the contract of appointment of anyone other than the Khalifah from the assistants and governors and workers (‘Ummal), since the one who is incapable is not capable of upholding the affairs of the subjects by the Book and the Sunnah which he had given the pledge upon or agreed upon according to the contract of appointment.
From the various evidences to prove this:
1 – Muslim reported from Abu Dharr who said
«قُلْتُ: يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ، أَلا تَسْتَعْمِلُنِي؟ قَالَ: فَضَرَبَ بِيَدِهِ عَلَى مَنْكِبِي ثُمَّ قَالَ: يَا أَبَا ذَرٍّ، إِنَّكَ ضَعِيفٌ، وَإِنَّهَا أَمَانَةُ، وَإِنَّهَا يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ خِزْيٌ وَنَدَامَةٌ، إِلاَّ مَنْ أَخَذَهَا بِحَقِّهَا وَأَدَّى الَّذِي عَلَيْهِ فِيهَا»
“I said: O Messenger of Allah, Why don’t you appoint me (to an official position)? He patted me on the shoulder with his hand and said, “O Abu Dharr, you are a weak man and it is a trust and it will be a cause of disgrace and remorse on the Day of Resurrectin except for one who takes it up with a full sense of responsibility and fulfils what is entrusted to him (discharges its obligations efficiently.)”
So this explains the issue by taking it by its right and performing what is upon him from it;in other words, to be capable of it, and the indication which is decisive is that the Messenger said who takes it and is not capable –
«وَإِنَّهَا يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ خِزْيٌ وَنَدَامَةٌ، إِلاَّ مَنْ أَخَذَهَا ...»
“it will be a cause of disgrace and remorse on the Day of Resurrectin except for one who takes it up with a full ...”.
2 – Al-Bukhari reported from Abu Hurayrah that the Messenger said
«إِذَا ضُيِّعَتِ الأَمَانَةُ فَانْتَظِرِ السَّاعَةَ. قَالَ: كَيْفَ إِضَاعَتُهَا يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ؟ قَالَ: إِذَا أُسْنِدَ الأَمْرُ إِلَى غَيْرِ أَهْلِهِ فَانْتَظِرِ السَّاعَةَ»
"When trust (honesty) is lost, then wait for the Hour. It was asked, “How will trust (honesty) be lost, O, Allah’s Propher?” He said, “When authority is given to those who not deserve it, then wait for the Hour.”
So this narration indicates the decisive prohibition for the responsibility to be placed with those who are incapable. The decisive indication (Qarina) is wasting the trust and it is from the signs of the Day of Judgement; all this to indicate the great sin for the responsibility to be entrusted to whoever is not capable to fulfil it.
As for how the capability should be defined, this requires examination since it could be connected to bodily or mental illness etc., and for that reason it is left undefined for the Madhalim court to confirm that, for example, the candidates for the Khalifah fulfil the necessary requirements.