What is the status of this narration?
اتخذوا السودان فإن ثلاثة منهم من سادات أهل الجنة لقمان الحكيم والنجاشي وبلال المؤذن
Make Africans/dark skinned people [leaders] for three of them will be among the leaders of Jannah; Luqman Al Hakim, Najashi and Bilal Al Muadhin (radiyallahu ‘anhu).
Imam Tabarani (rahimahullah) has recorded this narration on the authority of Sayyiduna ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbas (radiyallahu ‘anhuma).
(Al Mu’jamul Kabir, Hadith: 11482)
However, Imam Ibn Hibban (rahimahullah) and other Muhaddithun have declared the Hadith a fabrication. ‘Allamah Munawi (rahimahullah) states, ‘If the Hadith is not a fabrication, then it is extremely weak’
(Kitabul Majruhin, vol. 1 pg. 203, Faydul Qadir, Hadith: 100, Tanzihush Shari’ah, vol. 2 pg. 33. Also see Al Maqasidul Hasanah, Hadith: 460 and Al Mudawi)
The following narration should be quoted instead:
Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “The best of African men were three; Bilal (radiyallahu ‘anhu), Luqman and Mihja’.”
(Mustadrak Hakim, vol. 3 pg. 284. See here)
And Allah Ta’ala Knows best.
Answered by: Moulana Suhail Motala
Approved by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar