Gerakan ticks off T'ganu, KB over shutdown rule

Gerakan has urged the Terengganu state government and Kota Baru Municipal Council to withdraw its ruling for businesses to close during Friday prayer hours.

In a press release today, Gerakan vice-president Dominique Lau said the directive was "out of tune" and is against the rights and interests of non-Muslims.

He also said that the directive in Kota Baru would affect the economy and tourism as the two-hour closure would take place during lunch hour.

Therefore, Lau said that local businesses would suffer losses, indirectly hurting the state’s growth.

"While we respect the right for Muslims to perform their prayers on Friday, non-Muslim premises should not be subjected to the directive.

"As long as Muslim workers are allowed to leave for Friday prayer by their employers, there should not be a blanket mandatory closure for all businesses, it is hugely unfair and not pragmatic," said Lau.

He also said that the state authorities should consult with the public before introducing such regulations.

Effective this month, shopping malls in Terengganu will have to close during the Friday prayers as a move to prevent Muslim youths from loitering and avoiding their religious obligations.

As for Kota Baru, the new ruling took effect from Jan 14.





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