Jais: Congregational prayers allowed in Sarawak mosques, suraus starting today

The five daily congregational prayers are now allowed in mosques or suraus statewide effective today. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon
The five daily congregational prayers are now allowed in mosques or suraus statewide effective today. — Picture by Shafwan Zaidon

KUCHING, Dec 4 — The five daily congregational prayers are now allowed in mosques or suraus throughout the state effective today, said the Sarawak Islamic Religious Department (Jais).

In a statement last night, it however said Friday prayers were only allowed to be held in mosques or suraus or any premises that have obtained permission to establish Friday from the Sarawak Islamic Council only.

Adding this was in line with the guidelines for activities in mosques and suraus for CMCO in Sarawak, it said mosques or suraus must be opened one hour before the call to prayer or before the beginning of any activity.

It also said the mosques or suraus must be closed at 10pm daily, but the management committee can allow any individuals to hold solat fardhu outside the main five prayer times but this must be monitored by an appointed officer.

“For suraus that have been given permission to establish temporary Friday prayers in the CMCO period, the permitted period is extended until May 31, 2021 or until CMCO is declared expired (whichever is earlier),” it said.

It also reminded that the number of people allowed to go for prayers and other activities in the mosques or  suraus was based on the one-metre physical distancing space and the capacity size of the premises.

“All individuals regardless of age limit (children or senior citizens) and foreigners are allowed to attend prayers or or any activities that are allowed.

“However, if space is limited, the Management Committee of the mosque or surau can each set any method of selecting members of congregation whom are allowed. This must be clearly displayed and explained.

“All mosque activities (studies / lectures / talks / courses / workshops) are allowed provided they comply with physical distancing except for any activities that involve physical contact (such as handling body of deceased for funeral),” he said.

According to the department, any individual who is still under Covid-19 quarantine notice or showing symptoms of fever, cough or shortness of breath must prohibited from attending all activities at the mosque or surau.

“The Sarawak Islamic Council can withdraw the permission given to any mosque or surau if they fail to comply with the instructions and guidelines.

“These guidelines would also change from time to time based on situation,” he said. — Borneo Post

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