Nqobile Tshili, Chronicle Reporter
THE Muslim community in Zimbabwe has closed all mosques countrywide as it implements Covid-19 prevention measures.
The decision to close all mosques is informed by religious beliefs contained in the Koran.
Covid-19 cases are on the rise in the country as more than 4 000 have been infected while 102 had by Saturday succumbed to the virus.
Government limited religious gatherings to 50 and congregants have to meet between 8AM and 3PM.
Some religious organisations have been defying Government regulations to prevent the spread of the virus.
However, the Muslim community which lost one of its members to Covid-19 at the end of last month has suspended all religious gatherings.
Sheikh Isaac Ali, said their religion compels them to implement measures to contain a disease outbreak.
“On the 27th of July we lost one of our elders to Covid-19. He was a Sheikh here in Bulawayo and he was a first Covid-19 death in the Muslim community. Even though Government says it’s allowed to have religious gatherings with that, all Muslims have said this thing is among us and to stop the spread all the mosques have now been closed across the country to prevent the spread of Covid-19,” said Sheikh Ali.
“There is an injunction in the Koran and here in Barham Green (where he leads the mosque) before Government came up with restrictions on religious gatherings, we had made a ruling, minimise gatherings.”
He said worldwide, several mosques have been closed including the two biggest in the Muslim community, the equivalent to the Vatican in the Catholic Church that are located in Saudi Arabia.
“When there is an outbreak of a disease, Islam says do not go to that town where there is that disease and when you are in that town, do not leave that town because if you do, you will be spreading the disease. So, when we realised that Covid-19 was now here in Zimbabwe we decide to close the mosques,” said Sheikh Ali. — @nqotshili