Malaysia government has announced to ease a ban on mass prayer in mosques, initiating from Friday and ahead of this month’s Eid festival,
The government announcement came as it gradually relaxes curbs that have helped rein in the coronavirus. Media reports said this announcement follows last week’s re-opening of many businesses in the country, that stands with a tally of 6,819 infections and 112 deaths. It comes ahead of the Eid holiday that ends the fasting month of Ramadan, and falls on May 24 this year.
Kuala Lumpur, the capital, is among Malaysia’s federal territories which will allow prayers by congregations limited to 30 or fewer, said Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri, the religious affairs minister. “Even though worship in Islam not confined only to mosques and surahs, it has a profound effect on the spiritual development of Muslims,” he told.
The measure excludes Malaysia’s 12 remaining states, which have their own laws on religious matters, but Zulkifli said free to adopt similar measures if they wished.
Let it be known that mass prayers in Malaysia banned since around mid-March in a partial lock down after more than 2,300 people infected in the country’s biggest outbreak, following a religious gathering at a mosque attended by about 16,000 people.
Although new daily cases have declined steadily, schools and colleges will stay closed until June 9. Health authorities identified six clusters involving Islamic religious schools, with 635 students and staff testing positive.