COVID 19: Guidelines for Congregants
- Masaajid should remain open for daily Salaah, unless circumstances warrant otherwise.
- Utilize disinfecting agents, such as hand sanitizers, sanitary wipes, etc.
- Ablution facilities should be closed off, otherwise restricted to bare minimum.
- Preferably, Masaajid should provide paper towels as well as self-closing bins for appropriate disposal.
- All facilities, including carpets, should be disinfected as frequently as possible, preferably after every Salaah where possible.
- It is recommended that the place of Sajdah be covered with a disposable sheet or a personal Musallaa (prayer mat).
- Rotation of Saff (rows) for every Salaah is also recommended.
- Disposable cups should be provided at water points with a caution against reuse.
- Extra care and protection should be provided to Imams, Mu-adhins and other staff.
- Persons confirmed to be infected or may have possible symptoms should strictly abstain from attending the Masjid.
- The elderly, sickly and those with weak immunity as well as those who have recently travelled to high risk regions are urged to perform their Salaah at home.
- In the case where a person has to perform Salaah at home, try to form a congregation with household members.
- Congregants are strongly urged to perform their ablution at home.
- Congregants are strongly encouraged to perform their Sunan and Nawaafil Salaah at home. If it is not possible, then one should do so at an advisable distance from others whilst in the Masjid.
- Imaams are requested to minimize the Qiraa’ah in their Salaah.
- Congregants are permitted to perform Salaah with face masks. If in doubt, wear one.
- Masaajid and communities are urged to organise multiple congregational prayers in order to minimize large congregations. A schedule of times and venues may be drawn up and the community should be advised accordingly. Congregations of 100+ must be avoided.
- Congregants are strongly discouraged to unnecessarily socialize prior to and after Salaah.
- Performance of Jumu’ah is a salient feature of Islam and all effort should be made to perform it.
- Jumu’ah should be performed in smaller groups of less than 100 persons. Masaajid committees could devise a plan to ensure multiple congregations are held in a coordinated manner either at several venues or at staggered times in one venue. These arrangements should be clearly communicated to the congregation.
- Should a person choose not to perform the Jumu’ah Salaah due to health concerns, he is required to perform Zuhr Salaah.
- The Jumu‘ah Khutbah and Salaah should be as concise as possible. Any key messages to the congregations should also be kept extremely brief.
- If sufficient Ulama/Imaams are not available to conduct multiple Jumu‘ah prayers, the services of Huffaadh or other competently trained persons could be utilized to conduct the Jumu‘ah under the current circumstances.
- It may be prudent to implement crowd control measures to guide congregants accordingly.
- A concise Khutbah may be sourced from any of the Jamiatul Ulama South Africa offices, or Ulama of the community may be consulted.
- Communication to congregants should be adequate, frequent and clear, without any ambiguity.
- Only appointed officials/Imaams should disseminate information utilising various platforms.
- Safeguard against controversial and misleading opinions.
- Committee members together with their local Ulama/Imaams should discuss and agree upon the details unique to their respective Masaajid and subsidiary organs.
- All Masjid lectures and community programme should be suspended with immediate effect.
- A nikah may be performed in the Masjid, whilst ensuring that the participants do not exceed the stipulated quota. It should be conducted in the least possible time, without any additional activities. All administrative processes may be concluded prior to coming to the Masjid. Congratulating each other with embraces and handshakes should be avoided.
- Greeting with Salaam is necessary, however, should a person choose not to shake hands, it should be respected.
- We strongly urge all communities and households to turn to Allah in du’aa as well as towards rectifying our deeds and engaging in Istighfaar (seeking forgiveness) abundantly.