A file photo of the Omar ‘Ali Saifuddien Mosque at the capital. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

The re-opening of mosques and prayer halls around the country will be implemented in four phases starting May 29, the Minister of Religious Affairs announced.

Speaking during a press conference at the Ministry of Health, Yang Berhormat Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Hj Badaruddin Pengarah Dato Paduka Hj Othman said the first phase will run for two weeks, covering three Fridays which includes the following dates: May 29, June 5 and June 12.

“If there are no new cases during this period, we will proceed with the second phase which will allow the five obligatory prayers to be performed at mosques.”

“This includes mosques opening 10 minutes before the Azan (call for prayer) and closing 10 minutes after congregation while meeting the guidelines implemented,” said the Religious Affairs Minister.

A file photo of Minister of Religious Affairs Yang Berhormat Pehin Udana Khatib Dato Paduka Seri Setia Ustaz Hj Badaruddin speaking during a press conference at the Ministry of Health. Image: Ridhwan Kamarulzaman

Upon entering and leaving a mosque, congregants will be required to scan using the BruHealth app and update their health status everyday before and after visiting the mosque.

YB Pehin Dato Ustaz Hj Badaruddin added that to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus, wudhu or ablution are to be carried out at home, congregants must bring their own prayer mat and wear face masks.

“High-risk individuals who have been identified through the BruHealth app, children under 15 and women are not allowed to enter the mosque during the first, second and third phase,” he said.

A guide on mass prayers to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus will also be shared with the public, added the minister.

The Bruneian | BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

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