Praise be to Allaah.
If the imam does not recite at a moderate pace in his prayer,
and he recites al-Faatihah very quickly, and the person praying behind him
is not able to recite it behind him, then it is not valid for him to pray
behind him and the congregation has to look for another imam who will recite
at a moderate pace in his prayer, or they should go to another mosque in
which the people pray at a moderate pace, because reciting and moving at a
moderate pace in prayer is one of its essential parts.
Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) said: If it is
known that the imam does not recite at a moderate pace in his prayer, and
that he does not stand long enough to allow the people praying behind him to
complete al-Faatihah, then you should not pray with him at all, because it
is not permissible to pray with him, as you are caught between two things:
either you will follow him and miss out on the essential part of the prayer,
or you will do the essential part of the prayer and miss out on following
the imam. We warn these imams about such things. The scholars (may Allah
have mercy on them) have stated that it is haraam for the imam to rush so
much that it prevents the person praying behind him from doing what is
obligatory, and reciting and moving at a moderate pace are obligatory. It is
not acceptable for such imams to be imams of the Muslims, and they should be
dismissed from the post of imam if they are employed as such. Those who are
in charge of imams should go around the mosques and if they find anyone who
is like this, and who is not doing what is required of an imam, they should
dismiss him, because this is a bad custom.
I say: if it is the habit of this imam to recite so quickly
that the person praying behind him cannot recite al-Faatihah, then the
people of the mosque have to ask for him to be dismissed, and if it is known
that a person is like that, he should not start to pray with him at all and
he should go to another mosque. End quote.
Liqa’ al-Baab al-Maftooh, 146/9
See also the answer to question no.
It is obligatory for you to pray in congregation in the
mosque so long as you are able to do so; try to find a different mosque. For
more information on the evidence that it is obligatory to pray in
congregation, please see the answer to question no.
For more information on the distance between the mosque and
one’s home that makes it obligatory to pray in the mosque, please see the
answer to question no. 36674.
And Allah knows best.