Cape Town - The noise complaint against the Zeenatul Islam Masjid in District Six has taken another turn after the City conducted a “reasonable person” test and found that the athaan (Muslim call to prayer) is a "noise nuisance".
The City of Cape Town met with the mosque committee regarding the noise complaint.
“During the meeting the City of Cape Town alluded to two sound tests being conducted that had conflicting results. After conducting the sound test to measure decibels, the City of Cape Town took it upon itself to run a second 'reasonable person' test. As far as the mosque is concerned, there is a distinct difference between 'noise disturbance' and the athaan, the ringing of church bells, or any similar call to prayer as an act of worship,” said Zeenatul Islam Masjid Trust.
The masjid said the City reported back to the mosque's committee during the meeting that its own scientific test showed that the sound level of the athaan fell within the accepted decibel measure, as set out by the by-law.
The second test was a “reasonable person” test that led City officials to find that the athaan is a “noise nuisance”. This “reasonable person” test, is subjective and changing the terms of reference of the complaint amounts to a shifting of the goalposts by the City of Cape Town,” the masjid said.