GEORGE TOWN, Feb 9 — Penang has allowed obligatory congregational and Friday prayers to be held, with the number of congregants based on the size of the mosque or or surau, effective today.
Penang Islamic Religious Council (MAINPP) president Datuk Ahmad Zakiyuddin Abd Rahman said this was among the latest standard operating procedures (SOP) for mosques and surau in the state during the current implementation of the Movement Control Order (MCO).
“Obligatory prayers at mosques or surau are allowed to be held according to the size of the mosque while for Friday prayer, there must be at least 40 congregants but it is limited to those from the ‘kariah’ (vicinity) of the mosque, locals and permanent residents, aged 12 to 70.
“A prayer space for travelling Muslims, taxi or e-hailing drivers is also provided at mosques or surau,” he said in a statement today.
He said the call for prayer or Azan which was previously replaced with “sollu fi buyutikum’ (pray in your house) would be conducted as per normal practice.
Ahmad Zakiyuddin, who is also Penang Deputy Chief Minister I, said for funeral prayer, only 30 people consisting of family members and those who manage the funeral rites are allowed to be present and it shoud be held at a designated area.
However, he said visiting the grave after the burial is not allowed.
Ahmad Zakiyuddin said religious talks, as well as recitation of Surah Yasin and tahlil were only allowed to be held between the Magrib and Isyak prayers while preachers from outside of Penang were not allowed to give lectures at mosques and surau in the state.
“For the Friday sermon, only khatib (sermon readers) that are appointed by MAINPP are allowed and they must read the sermon issued by the Penang Islamic Religious Affairs Department (JHEAINPP) only.
“The sermon must be delivered within 10 minutes only,” he added.
Penang had previously suspended some activities at mosques and surau in the state following the implementation of MCO.
However, beginning last week, obligatory prayers at all mosques and surau in the state were allowed with a maximum of 15 people, while for Friday prayer, it can only be performed by 12 to 45 people including committee members of the respective mosque and surau.