MJC urges Ramaphosa to ease restrictions ahead of Ramadaan
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Cape Town – The Muslim Judicial Council (MJC) has appealed, together with other religious leaders, to President Cyril Ramaphosa to ease some of the existing Covid-19 lockdown restrictions ahead of the holy month of Ramadaan.
The religious occasion will be marked in the midst of the pandemic for the second year and is expected to begin between April 13 and 14, subject to the sighting of the new moon.
MJC president Sheikh Riad Fataar said they were awaiting a response to their plea.
“The community that is now facing the third wave is not the same community that faced the first wave of the pandemic. It is now a community that is empowered, a community that wears masks, sanitises and social distances in the mosques.
’’On top of that, the numbers are limited. There is a major difference now as majority of places of worship adhere to the regulations,” he said.
Ramaphosa recently said in a statement that the government was currently deliberating the matter.
“In the light of these precautionary measures, a number of religious organisations have asked that some of the existing restrictions on the size of congregations be eased. Government is currently deliberating on these and other issues, and will make an announcement in the coming days.
’’Another important factor is that during the various alert levels, religious organisations have incurred substantial financial losses that threaten their sustainability. As government we remain committed to working with the faith community to find workable solutions.
’’At the same time, public health and safety must be our paramount consideration,” Ramaphosa said.
The Gatesville Mosque is this year going digital and welcoming the holy month of Ramadhaan with the theme: “Limited gatherings , unlimited spirituality and compassion”
The mosque will adhere strictly to the Covid 19 protocols including allowing only 250 people in the mosque.
The various programmes during this month will be broadcast live via the mosque’s dedicated smartphone App as well as media platforms like YouTube and Facebook.
The usual food parcels programme, as well as the “ light up a destitute home in Ramadhaan “ and an outreach program for the homeless street sleepers will still be implemented.
The mosque is among the largest in the country with a congregation base of over 6 000 people.