Storm over new open mosque in Cape Town

2014-09-15 12:29

(Shutterstock)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - A planned open mosque, which will be gender-equal and welcome non-Muslims, is causing a storm in Cape Town, according to reports.

The Cape Times reported on Monday that the Open Mosque is due to open in Wynberg on Friday, despite fierce criticism from parts of the local Muslim community.

Its founder, Cape Town-born academic Dr Taj Hargey, is a professor at the Muslim Educational Centre of Oxford in the UK.

He told the newspaper that it is time for a "religious revolution" in the province, and the new mosque will be gender-equal, interracial and non-aligned - meaning Sunni and Shia Muslims can attend the same service.

The Islam preached in the mosque will be enlightened, erudite and egalitarian, he said. Women will be allowed to lead prayers, and gay people and non-Muslims will reportedly be welcome.

'Heretic'

However, members of the Cape Town Muslim community have taken to social media to criticise the new mosque, with some labelling him a "heretic" or "non-believer".

The Muslim Judicial Council (MJC) will have no authority over the mosque. Its deputy president, Riad Fataar, told the Voice of the Cape (VOC) radio station that the MJC is investigating the new mosque and has noted concerns raised by the community. He added that he would call it a place of worship and not a mosque.

"Anything that goes against our deen [faith]... will be in total condemnation from the Muslim Judicial Council," Fataar told VOC.

Hargey has threatened to take action against those spreading lies about the mosque, adding that the MJC does not want to be challenged on the theological monopoly it has, according to the Cape Times report.

The Voice of the Cape reported that a local advocacy group, The Inner Circle, which raises awareness about homophobia in the Muslim community, has been subjected to threats and intimidation after rumours spread that it was associated with the new mosque.

Rashied Omar, the imam of the Claremont Main Road Mosque, told News24 that there was a lot of confusion in the community about the new mosque, and not enough information about it at this stage. He declined to comment further.

Read more on:    mjc  |  cape town  |  religion

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
79 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.