19th March 2020
Allah be praised and abundance of salutations be upon our Beloved Prophet (SAW)
Daily media reports in South Africa are reporting an increasing number of confirmed Corona Virus cases. Previously it was amongst those that were returning from international travel, but now transmissions are occurring independently among South Africans.
Current international experience in these countries severely affected by the virus is showing that separation and isolation to prevent person to person is proving to be the way forward in preventing further transmission and reducing the numbers drastically of new infections and thus reducing fatalities. Countries in point are China and Italy who have adopted a “total lock down” position. This is based on an old well known maxim “prevention is better that cure”.
I wish to compliment those Ulema that have taken the difficult decision to cancel all gatherings in Musjids and elsewhere. It is wise decision on their part to suspend five daily Salaah as well as Jummah Salaah until the situation warrants. They have done this out of concern for their congregation to minimise the possibility of any members from acquiring or transmitting the virus. It is already confirmed that there are confirmed cases in the Muslim community.
I fully endorse their actions and I am supportive of it, that they have done the right thing at the right time, taking a courageous stand in the face of opposition. Their decision is further strengthened by recommended and proven principles of Public Health measures to prevent transmission in times like this and I whole heartedly endorse their decision as a wise and practical one. This is also a common sense approach.
I would urge others who have not done so to follow this example and have the courage to do so not only to protect the Muslims but the general population in South Africa and show solidarity with the rest of South Africans.
The international community on a daily basis is announcing cancellations or postponements of sporting and other events based on the same premise that minimum contact is possibly the best practical solution at the moment to minimise the spread of the disease. These are well thought out and considered decisions which are respected and appreciated by all.
I strongly recommend that all places of worship including Musjids, Jummah Salaah and all gatherings be suspended until such time when it is safe to resume normal activity.
DR EBRAHIM KHAN
CHAIRMAN – IMASA DURBAN BRANCH