The past year has indeed been tough with the emergence of the pandemic and the multiple lockdowns imposed. This had resulted in various public holidays and festivities being an in-home affair sans the open houses and the “balik kampung” trips. As each festivity or public holiday passes by, we would have manifested a huge hope that the lockdown would be lifted and we could finally go back to our respective hometowns.
Unfortunately, this year’s Eid al-Adha celebrations are of no difference either. The National Security Council (MKN) has recently released a full guide to the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) for Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the National Recovery Program (NRP). It’s crucial to note that Phase 1 involves Kedah, Selangor, Negeri Sembilan, Melaka, Johor, Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Labuan while Phase 2 involves, Perlis, Perak, Pahang, Kelantan, Terengganu, Penang, Sabah and Sarawak.
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Here are the guidelines issued by the National Security Council, which comes into effect on 20th July 2021:
- All mosques, surau and areas declared to be under Phase 1 and 2 of the NRP
- The time that is appropriate for the activities involved in the specified area
- The supplementary Eid al-Adha prayers and qurban ritual
- Regulation 16 PU(A) 293/2021
- Act 342.
- Emergency Ordinance (Prevention and Infectious Disease Control) (Amended) 2021
- Subject to health regulations, local authorities and instructions or regulations from the state religious authority
Activities and Protocol
- Allowed at masjids and surau
- Not allowed at home
Eid al-Adha Supplementary Prayers and Khutbah (Sermon)
- Allowed in accordance with the SOPs, the state religious authority, and related parties, with physical distancing.
Feast After Eid Prayer
- Not allowed
- Allowed in accordance with the SOPs, the state religious authority, and related parties, with physical distancing
Social Visits, Graveyard Visits, Open Houses or Feasts
- Not allowed
- The number of entrances should be limited
- Counters to check body temperature, sanitise hands and record the attendance of the congregation should be made readily available
- Wearing a face-covering mask is a must
- Sanitise the praying area and the surrounding areas including restrooms, and ablution areas regularly
- The usage of restrooms should be limited to the number of available restrooms at any one time
- The mosques and surau involved must have sufficient staff to assist in the crowd control of the congregation
- Attendance should be recorded using the MySejahtera application or recorded manually in the attendance book
- Only healthy members without symptoms should be allowed to attend
- The door to the mosque should only be opened an hour before prayers and would be closed immediately after the congregational prayers.
There should be distance markers of 1 meter apart in the congregation area to ensure physical distancing at all times.
- Handshakes or physical contact are not allowed
- Physical distancing should always be observed when entering and exiting the mosque
- Members of the congregation are encouraged to bring their own “sejadah”
- The congregation should disperse in a calm manner
- Gatherings are not allowed after the conclusion of the activities inside and outside the masjid
- The congregation must take their ablution at home, however, they may still renew it at the mosque or surau.
- MITI letters would not be accepted at all interstate roadblocks in Malaysia starting 18th July till 21st July.
- This decision was done to avoid irresponsible parties from misusing their MITI letter to cross states to celebrate Hari Raya this coming week.
- Only emergency matters with police permission and health matters, including vaccinations, are allowed.
Albeit the fact that the SOPs are strict, we hope everyone adheres to them amidst the festivities. Please practice physical distancing at all times and mask up!
Source: The Rakyat Post
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