Durban - After months of sourcing donations to build at least five prayer facilities for Muslims at the Kruger National Park (KNP), one of the structures has been launched.
In a historic moment yesterday, KNP managing executive Glenn Phillips, South African National Parks (SANParks) Honorary Rangers (SHR) Joburg South branch chairperson Yusuf Dockrat and other dignitaries launched the prayer facility at the Skukuza Rest Camp.
Muslims travelling to the national park for leisure and those who work there can now make use of the facility at Skukuza which is the first of the five to be built in the KNP.
The SHR Joburg South branch spent months sourcing funds to develop five facilities, but only one has been completed.
“This facility is a great asset for Muslims,” said Dockrat. “This is a place of worship and should be treated as such. We ask for adherence to the basic rules. We should all take responsibility to ensure that it is kept, neat and tidy and in a pure state,” he added.
The facility is located on the pathway between the Clock Tower and the Stevenson Hamilton Memorial Library. It includes a wash up area for males and females. Muslims guests have been asked to bring their own musallas (prayer mats).
The facility was built in a very short space of time but raising the funds had taken a few months,” said Phillips.
He said the launch of the facility was in line with SANParks’ vision of “connecting society”, adding that four others would be opened in Lower Sabie, Satara Rest Camp, Afsaal and Tshokwane picnic sites.
Priest Junaid Hassim said the facilities were important because Muslims prayed five times a day.