Religious leader of the Samaniyya order in Sudan from 1881-1885. In 1881, he declared that he was the Mahdi or the messianic redeemer of the Islamic faith.
He was interested in religion from a young age and after staying with Sheikh Muhammad Sharif for seven years, he was awarded to be Sheikh and traveled around on religious missions.
He led a successful military campaign against the Turco-Egyptian government of the Sudan.
He grew up in a family of descendants of the Prophet Muhammad.
He is a descendant of actor Alexander Siddig.