Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and an Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada: “Given the fact that leadership in Islam is a crucial responsibility that involves the rights of other people, it is allowed to talk about the negative aspects of a person who happens to be a candidate for a post if that has any relevance or relationship to the successful performance of his duties as a leader or a person in charge. Allah, the Almighty, tells us in Surat Yusuf that Prophet Yusuf, peace be upon him, spoke about his positive aspects of his personality in order to convince the king that he was fit for the charge of responsibility.
And when Abu Dharr, the Prophet’s Companion, may Allah be pleased with him, asked him for a position of leadership, the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, told him, “You are a weak person and you will not be able to discharge the trust that comes with the position.”
It is clear from these proofs that if one is sure that a candidate for a position of trust and responsibility in the community is not capable of performing duties, then one must tell about the negative aspects that one notices in his personality. This is not considered Gheebah (backbiting).
This issue is similar to raising comments on a suitor; and it’s reported that the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, spoke negatively about two persons who proposed to Fatimah Bint Qays; one of them was Mu`awiyyah and the other was Abu Jahm. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Mu`ayyiah is a poor person; therefore he cannot maintain you while Abu Jahm is a perpetual traveler who never stays home.”