The Federation of Islamic Association of New Zealand (FIANZ) has elected a new president to lead the community organisation for the Muslim community in New Zealand.

Ibrar Sheikh, the former president of South Auckland Muslim Association (SAMA), was elected the president of FIANZ at the election held under the supervision of Interim Shura Council at its office in Wellington on Sunday, September 20.

Mr Sheikh had earlier served as the role of the Secretary at FIANZ and vice-president of Auckland City Multi-Ethnic Council.

For nearly one year now, FIANZ was engulfed in internal strife concerning its leadership that led to the creation of two groups claiming to head the community organisation.

As per a circular released by FIANZ earlier this week, FIANZ Council acknowledged the dispute and added that it had been resolved after mediation efforts from the Muslim community members in the last few months and “underpinned by a ‘Settlement Agreement’.”

As a result of the reconciliation, and Interim Shura Council was formed which worked through the impacting consensus on the date and mode of election of FIANZ president.

The circular further read that the election for the next president of FIANZ was conducted last weekend, with two names in the prospects, Mohammed Farouk Khan and Ibrar Sheikh, both from the Auckland region.

Ibrar Sheikh garnered the majority votes at the election and was elected as president of FIANZ.

Speaking with the Indian Weekender, Mr Ibrar Sheikh said FIANZ has been and will work to serve for the Muslim community in New Zealand and unite the community as one.

“I have been associated with FIANZ for over a decade in different capacities, and it’s my privilege to serve the Muslim community this time as the president,” Mr Ibrar Sheikh said.

FIANZ’s AGM will be held on October 3 next month to elect the vice president, treasurers and secretaries who will look after the operations of the organisation for the upcoming year.