The Congregational prayers and the Conditions of Imama
Conditions of Imamah and Issues of Precedence
1503 - Precedence for Imama --
Imam Malik, Imam Shafi'i
The person should lead who is most learned and not one who is the best reciter.
They understood the words "best reciter" to mean the most
learned in the law, as they believed that the need for filth in imáma is greater
than that for recitation. Further, the best reciter among the Companions was
necessarily the best in legal knowledge contrary to the situation that prevails
Abu Mas'ud al-Ansari reported Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: The one who is most versed in Allah's Book should act as Imam for the people, but If they are equally versed in reciting it, then the one who has most knowledge regarding Sunnah if they are equal regarding the Sunnah, then the earliest one to emigrate; it they emigrated at the same time, then the earliest one to embrace Islam. No man must lead another in prayer where (the latter) has authority, or sit in his place of honour in his house, without his permission. Ashajj in his narration used the word," age" in place of" Islam".