Ramadan in Malaysia is certainly not the way it used to be. While we miss performing our prayers in the mosque, buying ayam percik from Ramadan bazaars, or visiting our grandparents at our hometown, we look forward to the bright side of staying at home while still being able to bring ourselves closer to our Creator
As we’re days away from celebrating Hari Raya Aidilfitri, you might be wondering if the mosques and suraus are open for Aidilfitri prayers and other congregational prayers. In this article, we’ve compiled the latest updates from each state in Malaysia and a summary of what you should know.
1. Federal Territories of Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Labuan
Starting 15 May 2020, all Friday prayers and other congregational prayers like, tarawih and Hari Raya Aidilfitri prayers, are allowed to resume in selected mosques and suraus in the Federal Territories. This is only permitted at COVID-19 green zones and with strict guidelines.
According to The Star, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Religious Affairs) Datuk Dr Zulkifli Mohamad Al-Bakri said the prayers are only limited between 3 and 30 people. The selected mosques and suraus are also required to adhere to the SOPs set by the National Security Council and the Health Ministry.
On 14 May 2020, it was announced that Selangor will continue to suspend Friday prayers, congregational prayers (including tarawih and Hari Raya Aidilfitri prayers) and religious lectures in mosques, suraus and musollahs to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Previously, Sultan of Selangor, Sultan Sharafuddin, had decreed to suspend all prayers and religious lectures until 31 May 2020.
In a statement provided to New Straits Times, Selangor Islamic Religious Department (JAIS) has stated that Friday prayers can only be performed by the imam and mosques' committee members and a small group of 3-12 people, starting 14 May 2020.
Starting 15 May 2020, Penang Mufti Datuk Seri Dr Wan Salim Wan Mohd Noor has announced that all Friday prayers, congregational prayers, tarawih and Aidilfitri prayers are temporarily suspended. It also includes religious lectures and talks as well as breaking of fast ceremonies.
According to Malay Mail, the Friday prayers in Penang are only restricted to 12-15 attendees, which consists of officials and committee members of the mosque or surau.
On 15 May 2020, Perak Islamic Religious and Malay Customs Council chief executive officer Shahrul Azam Shaari had announced that Sultan of Perak, Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah, had consented to all Friday prayers and Hari Raya Aidilfitri prayers to be held in mosques and suraus in the state.
According to The Star, the prayers are subject to several conditions such as allowing only 12 people to congregate, including the imam and khatib (mosque officials). Furthermore, the duration of the Friday prayer, from azan (call for prayer) and khutbah (sermon), and the takbir and sermon for Aidilfitri prayer must be completed within 20 minutes.
Currently, all mosques and suraus in Perak are still not open to the public.
According to Kedah Mufti Datuk Sheikh Fadzil Awang, Sultan of Kedah, Sultan Al Aminul Karim Sultan Sallehuddin Sultan Badlishah, had consented to all Friday prayers and Hari Raya Aidilfitri prayers to be held in the mosques in Kedah.
However, it's only limited to 12 people, in accordance to the SOPs provided by the National Security Council and Health Ministry. Based on an article by Malay Mail, all members of the congregation must adhere to the one-meter social distancing, perform their ablution at home, and bring their own prayer mat.
Starting 13 May 2020, the Johor government has allowed all Friday and Hari Raya Aidilfitri prayers to resume in Johor, and this has been consented by Johor Ruler, Sultan Ibrahim Ibni Almarhum Sultan Iskandar.
According to The Star, the members of the congregation are only limited to 12 people, including the imam, the bilal, and mosque committees, who can take turns to perform the prayers. To monitor the number of worshippers praying during Friday and Hari Raya Aidilfitri prayers, the police and Rela will be stationed at all mosques.
The Regent of Pahang, Tengku Hassanal Ibrahim Alam Shah Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri'ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah has consented to all Friday prayers to be held at one selected mosque per district:
- The State Mosque (Sultan Ahmad Shah 1 mosque)
- Kuipsas (Kolej Universiti Islam Pahang Sultan Ahmad Shah) mosque
- IIUM (International Islamic University Malaysia) mosque
According to Harian Metro, Pahang Mufti Datuk Seri Abdul Rahman Osman also announced that Hari Raya Aidilfitri prayers are not allowed in all mosques in the state, following the extension of the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO). The Mufti encouraged all worshippers to perform solat sunat Aidilfitri at home with their family members.
As of 17 May 2020, the Kelantan government is still waiting for an official statement from the state Council of Islamic Affairs and Malay Customs as well as the consent from the Sultan of Kelantan, Sultan Muhammad V.
According to Malay Mail, the Kelantan government had proposed to allow more than 40 people to perform Friday and Aidilfitri prayers in various mosques in the state, while adhering to the SOP provided by the Health Ministry.
Previously, Kelantan had allowed Friday prayers at the mosque, but only limited to four mosque officials comprising imam tua, imam muda, bilal and siak. The mosques in Kelantan are still not open to the public.
Starting 22 May 2020, the Terengganu Islamic Religion and Malay Customs Council (Maidam) president Datuk Osman Muda had announced that Friday prayers are allowed in one mosque per district under strict conditions. This decision had been consented by the Sultan of Terengganu, Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin.
According to New Straits Times, the members of the congregation are only limited to 40 people and are required to perform their ablution at home, wear a face mask, practice social distancing, and avoid physical contact such as hand shakes.
Datuk Osman also added that Aidilfitri prayers will not be allowed in any mosque or surau in Terengganu.
The Melaka state government had announced that Friday prayers are only allowed in mosques in Kedah starting 29 May 2020. However, it's only limited to 40 members of the congregation including the khatib, imam, bilal (muezzin) and mosque officials.
According to the New Straits Times, Hari Raya Aidilfitri are not allowed and Melaka Mufti, Datuk Abdul Halim Tawil encouraged worshippers to perform their prayers at home with their family members.
11. Negeri Sembilan
The Negri Sembilan Islamic Affairs Council had announced that Friday prayers and Hari Raya Aidilfitri prayers are allowed in the state and district mosques as well as suraus, starting 15 May 2020. This decision had been consented by the Yang di-Pertuan Besar of Negri Sembilan, Tuanku Muhriz Tuanku Munawir, the four Undang, and the Tunku Besar of Tampin.
According to The Star, only 4-12 people are allowed during these prayers and the congregation should only consist of committee members and mosque or surau officials.
On 16 May 2020, the Perlis Islamic Affairs and Malay Customs Council (MAIPs) had announced that Hari Raya Aidilfitri prayers will not be held in mosques, and to be performed at home.
According to Malay Mail, MAIPs had also shared a guideline with the consent of the Raja of Perlis, Tuanku Syed Sirajuddin Putra Jamalullail. You can download the guidelines from the Perlis Mufti Department official website, which includes 'takbir', prayers, sermon, practices of sunat, and the obligation to give personal tithe.
On 12 May 2020, the Sabah Fatwa Council had announced that Aidilfitri prayers will not be held in any mosques or suraus in Sabah.
According to Malay Mail, the decision was made in accordance to the suspension of Friday prayers and other congregational prayers, which had been extended to 26 May 2020, said Sabah Mufti, Datuk Bungsu Aziz Jaafar. Additionally, the Sabah Mufti had advised all worshippers to perform their prayers at home.
Starting 22 May 2020, Sarawak Islamic Council president Datuk Misnu Taha had announced that Friday payers are allowed to be held in mosques and suraus in Sarawak. However, strict guidelines have to be followed and the congregation is limited to 4-12 people comprising mosque and surau officials and committee members only.
According to The Star, the Sarawak Islamic Council would not allow Aidilfitri prayers to be held in mosques and suraus this year, and advised worshippers to perform their prayers at home.
And there you have it! We hope these updates will provide everything you need to know about the Aidilfitri prayers in each state in Malaysia. It may be allowed in some states in Malaysia, but it's best to perform our Aidilfitri prayers at home.